Three things to remember when hiring a trial lawyer.

 

  1. Litigation is about money.  Make sure you talk to your lawyer about possible outcomes, relative likelihood of each possible conclusion, and cost relative to the expected aftermaths.  If you feel an emotional need for litigation, think about it, and try to attach some quantitative value to the equation.  The average case costs $30,000.00 to bring to trial, and ends with another $20,000.00 if appealed.  So before rushing to court, consider Alternative Dispute Resolution, either via informal settlement negotiations or a more structured mediation/arbitration process.
  2. Hire a lawyer you can trust.  A lawyer will expect you to follow his or her advice.  We are required to act in the clients’ interest, but if you don’t feel a lawyer is being straight forward at the outset, you have reason to politely decline to enter into a retainer agreement.  To get the most effective legal advice, you will need to be prepared to follow your lawyer’s advice.  Continue your search until you find someone whose advice you know you can trust.
  3. Understand the value of expertise.  Not all lawyers are created equal.  There is a spectrum of ability, professionalism, and experience with us, just as there is with all professions and trades.  Look not only for a lawyer you feel you can trust, but also one who has experience in the area you need help with.  Don’t be afraid to ask questions and interview multiple lawyers until you find the one that is right for you.