If you are involved in any type of civil or criminal case, it’s generally in your best interest to contact a lawyer. Of course, just like any other professional you hire, you want to thoroughly vet an attorney before making a hiring decision. Let’s take a closer look at some questions you should ask as part of that vetting process.

1- Do You Seek Settlements or Jury Awards?

Generally speaking, a settlement takes less time and effort to obtain, which means you’ll likely engage in settlement talks prior to trial. Therefore, you may receive less money but in an expedited fashion. Your attorney should be able to talk more about whether a settlement or jury award is more likely in your case and the pros and cons of each decision.

2- What is Your Fee Structure?

An attorney may charge a flat fee for services rendered, and that fee may need to be paid in full prior to filing your case or taking other actions. However, legal counsel typically charges by the hour for things like answering phone calls or emails. Ideally, you will be given a detailed retainer agreement prior to making a hiring decision. This will make it easier to determine if you can afford a given provider’s services, and it can also ensure that you know when payment is due and how you can make a payment.

ALSO READ  The Power of Deals and Promotions in Business Growth

3- Do You Charge Less When the Paralegal Works on the Case?

If you hire a smaller law firm, there is a good chance that the attorney you hire will handle the case personally. Conversely, if you hire someone from a larger firm, you will likely deal with multiple people as your case unfolds. Ideally, you will ask ahead of time whether you will be working with the person who you are consulting with, a paralegal, or some combination of the two. A paralegal is essentially an office assistant who can help with your matter but cannot offer legal advice.

4- Do You Charge for After Hours Communication?

You will likely have questions about your case as it unfolds. You may also want updates about your case on a periodic basis as it can often be days or weeks between court dates or other meaningful events. An attorney has an ethical duty to answer your questions and take other actions that enable you to get a favorable outcome in your case.

However, it’s important to clarify ahead of time if this means that you’ll get responses to emails after hours or if you’ll have to wait until the next day to avoid a fee. You should also clarify as to whether you’ll get responses by text, through social media, or through other means.

Choosing the right attorney could be the difference between winning and losing a criminal case. It could also be the reason why you obtain a favorable outcome in a civil case. Therefore, it’s important to ask the right questions during the vetting process to ensure that you have the right person for the job on your team.

ALSO READ  DotBig: A Comprehensive Review for Aspiring Forex Traders