Ideally, you should have a list of questions ready to ask during this meeting. If it’s your first time working with a lawyer, you may wonder what you should ask. This article can help with that. Below are questions that can help you better understand whether you’re about to hire the right legal professional.
The legal field covers a range of subject matters and industries. It’s difficult to find a lawyer versed in all aspects of the law. Most lawyers only specialize in a particular area.
Some common legal practice areas include:
It’s essential to find a lawyer who is specialized in the matter you need. For example, you don’t want to hire a corporate lawyer if you’re going through a divorce.
This may or may not be an essential question to ask. It all depends on your specific needs. It takes years of field experience to become an expert in some legal fields. So, if you may be going to trial, you want to find a lawyer with at least 10 years of experience in the field related to your case.
Other times, a lawyer who’s only recently passed the bar exam can handle a case just fine. It all depends on the legal issue.
Many people overlook this question. But you want to make sure your lawyer has experience working with issues like yours and people like you. They have a better chance of ensuring a successful outcome if they’re familiar with other clients who have gone through similar procedures.
Some cases, like patent or DUI, require additional specializations to be effectively represented.
This question is obviously important. You should know whether you can afford the services and how you will need to pay. Possible fees may include flat fees, contingent fees, retainer, and statutory fees.
You also want to ask for a total cost estimate. The lawyer may not be able to give you an exact number right away, but they can provide an estimate so you can plan the budget accordingly.
A great feature of Legalhood is that all of our services come with one low flat fee, making costs easier than ever. You can see more in our Pricing section.
Once you’re done with billing questions, it’s only natural to ask for an estimate of the legal action timeframe. Again, don’t expect to have an answer that includes the exact day their service will end, but you should get a rough idea of how long the resolution could take.
This is an important question in a couple of ways. The way a professional approaches negotiations, contracts, or dispute resolutions can really make a difference. If the lawyer you’re about to hire typically “goes for the kill” in his divorce cases, and you’re after a friendly divorce, they may not be the best option for you.
Don’t be afraid to ask the lawyer whether your case can be solved differently. See if there are out-of-court arrangements that may also cost you less money.
Your lawyer may not be a fortune teller, but they can give you their preliminary assessment of the possible outcome. There is no right or wrong answer here, only an honest one.
Communication is essential when working with a lawyer. You want to know how often they will inform you about what’s happening in your case. Ask them under what circumstances and how often you will hear from them.
First-time meetings are important for both you and the lawyer. They set the tone for how further collaboration will go and allow you to get to know each other. Don’t be afraid to ask the questions above, as they’ll help you decide whether the lawyer you’re considering is the right match for you. When you find a good lawyer, you’re one step closer to winning your case.
We hope these tips will help you in your own conversations with a lawyer. If you would like to have a quick conversation with a lawyer about your particular case, please visit our “Talk to a Lawyer” page.