How Do You Know if You Have the Correct Attorney for Litigation?June 1, 2015
5 questions you need to ask before moving forward with an attorney for litigation.
Retaining the correct litigation attorney is very important. You need someone who understands your case, can help you navigate the complexities of the court system and aligns with your long-term goals.
If you retain the correct attorney, you may work with him/her for decades, so take your time and make the right decision. Here is a list of how to know if you have the correct attorney for litigation.
• What is their experience in the specific legal field?
It is vital that the attorney you hire for your litigation has a strong level of experience with issues simi-lar to yours. Often the more experience in a certain legal field the better, but that doesn’t mean you should overlook attorneys who have fewer years of experience, as long as he/she has some knowledge in the area. Does the attorney have trial experience, or have courtroom experience.
• When was the last time they handled a case like yours?
The legal environment can change rapidly and your litigation attorney should have recent experience with a case like yours, as the law is ever-changing. If it has been decades since he/she last handled a similar situation, he/she may not be able to provide the reliable, up-to-date legal assistance you need.
• How do they prefer to handle and settle cases?
Attorneys have varying preferences when it comes to handling cases. Many will excel at negotiating and settling a case out of court, while other attorneys will stand firm and prefer to let the trial run its course. Obviously, your case will be situation-specific, but take a look at the past results for your litiga-tion attorney. Have they won many of their cases? Do they have a track record of settling out of court? Consider these factors and weigh them against your litigation preference.
• Do you feel comfortable with this person?
Retaining an attorney is more than just numbers, statistics and years of experience. It should also come down to whether or not you feel comfortable retaining this person, and whether they have earned your trust. Depending on your case, you could spend days, weeks and/or months working on the matter with your attorney. Make certain they are someone who provides clear legal advice, pro-vides recommendations and options that make sense, respects your goals, aligns with your core values and will serve your needs. You do not have to be best friends, but you and your attorney should have a solid working rapport, so that you are comfortable putting your case in their hands.
• How are the Fees Assessed?
Attorneys will assess fees and payments in different ways, so make certain everything is up front and clearly laid out. Do they charge by the hour or is there a flat fee? Is there a fee for consultations? Are there contingency fees? Ethical attorneys will give you a clear and honest explanation of their fees, allowing you to make the correct decision for your case. You should also ask about payments and bill-ing options. Can you work out an extended payment plan, are there monthly billing options? All of these factors will help you retain the correct litigation attorney. Also, do not be afraid to ask the attor-ney to provide you with a proposed budget for the litigation, and for the various phases of the litiga-tion.
Keep these questions in mind and you’ll have the tools you need to retain the correct attorney and have the best chance of reaching the most successful outcome in your case. With Marshall Socarras Grant, P.L., we can help you navigate through the rough waters and find the best litigation attorney for your case. For more information please contact us at 561.361.1000 or click here.