There are a lot of lawyer jokes out there. You have probably laughed at a few of those jokes and maybe even told some of your own. People like to poke fun at lawyers how greedy they supposedly are and how willing they are to lie just to get what they want. On the other hand, lawyers serve a very important purpose and they play a very important role in society. When the time comes that you are in legal trouble, you would wish that you have a very good lawyer by your side, exactly the kind that you make fun of. But how can you find a good lawyer?
Why Would You Need a Lawyer?
There are many reasons why you might need a lawyer . You could have some problems that have some legal implication. You could be facing criminal charges. Those situations would call for specialized knowledge of the law which you might not have. What you need to find would be the best lawyer that you can hire.
When you are facing criminal charges for example, a lawyer should be able to tell you what your rights are. They can also point out the strengths and more importantly the weaknesses of the case that you are facing. They can also make sure that your side of what had happened can be presented to the court in the right way. They can also help you to file for divorce and bankruptcy as well as in coming up with your last will and testament.
Sometimes having a lawyer with you at the earliest moment possible is very crucial. One good example of that would be being involved in a really serious car accident. A lawyer can interview witnesses immediately to help explain your side.
But the services of a lawyer would not only be useful when you are facing legal problems already. Having the right legal advice at the right moment for example can help you to stay away from legal problems.
Finding the Right Lawyer
So, we have gone through the reasons why you need a good lawyer to help you out. The next thing for you to know would be how to go about finding a good lawyer. There are several steps that you can follow. None of these steps would guarantee that you will be able to get the services of the best lawyer around, but they could help.
Personal or Professional Recommendations
Nothing can beat the recommendations of people that you know when you need to get the services of a professional. The same thing is true when you need to get the services of a lawyer. When you get recommendations you have some assurance already that the lawyer can deliver the kind of service that you need. You might know someone who has hired a good lawyer before. If you moved to a different area, your lawyer from your old place might be able to introduce you to a lawyer he/she knows in your new location.
Lawyer Referral Services
If you don’t know anyone personally who can refer a good lawyer to you, then you can rely on a service that aims to do that for a fee. There are lawyer referral services that you can turn to. These services will match your needs with the right lawyer that they are in contact with. They will let you get in touch with the possible lawyer for an initial interview. You have to make sure that the service is certified so you know that the lawyer is really a good one.
There are many advantages of using a lawyer referral service. One of the most important advantages would be that they can match your needs with the right lawyer. They will only refer you to attorneys who have certain levels of experience and who are insured.
Another effective way of finding a lawyer would be through advertisements. You can find ads of lawyers offering their services on newspapers, magazines and websites. Normally, you can find lawyer ads in local publications. Get the contact info of the lawyer from the ad and then arrange an initial meeting.
Free Legal Aid Agencies
What if you are unable to pay for the services of a lawyer? The steps that we have enumerated so far would work for those with money to pay. But the service of a lawyer would not come cheap. It can cost a great deal of money. What if you do not have the money to spare?
If you do not have extra money to pay for the services of a lawyer, then you can turn to free legal aid agencies. These agencies are dedicated to helping out people like you, those who are in need of lawyers but cannot pay for it. This would depend on the area where you live. Check what your options are.
Prepaid Legal Services
There is such a thing as a prepaid legal service. What does that mean? That would be the service that is due to you for your legal insurance from your work, credit union, labor union and even your credit card. You can either be entitled to a certain amount of time from the lawyer or you can get their services at a discounted amount.
What to Look for?
We have given the steps for looking for a lawyer. How do you actually know if you are talking to the right one?
Try to Shop Around
First of all, you should be able to compare. Do not go for the first lawyer that was recommended to you and hire him or her out of the blue. You have to find out if they are a good fit for your needs. Talk to several lawyers first before you hire anyone. Make sure that you take notes and compare.
One of the most important aspects of a lawyer’s service would be communication. How will they communicate with you? Will they be ready and willing to contact you right away? You should be able to communicate with them immediately and if they cannot commit to that then you might have a problem.
You should check the reputation of the lawyer that you are considering to hire. You should ask around and find out how they are regarded within the legal community. Find someone who is a former client and ask if there is anything that you need to know. It would be so easy to find out about the reputation of a lawyer, that you should spend some time on it.
The services of a lawyer cost a great deal of money. You should find someone who is within your budget. There is nothing wrong with checking the costs first before you hire a particular lawyer. You don’t want to ruin your finances by hiring an expensive lawyer who is beyond your means.
These are the things to keep in mind when you want to hire the best lawyer to help you out.