Top Things You Need to Know about Hiring an Attorney in Chicago
Legal services are a lot like any other product: the wise consumer needs to do extensive research before making an informed decision. Unless you are skilled in the relevant area of the law and a vested party fighting for your rights, you may end up walking away with so much less than you are actually entitled to. Once you obtain several lawyer referrals with experience in the corresponding practice area, make certain that you conscientiously research each candidate. Below are some of the most essential factors that you need to keep in mind when you are searching for the best attorney for your case in Chicago.
Ask for a Referral
Lawyers, accountants, psychologists, financial planners, and other professionals meet and work with other lawyers as they are working and can often provide you with a useful referral. Ask them for a few names of attorneys who have good reputations and are more than qualified to handle your case. Lawyers, specifically, have an intimate knowledge of the reputations of other lawyers, even those not within their specialization, so a lawyer you already know can be a good place to begin. You may also ask your friends or family members who have gone through a situation that is similar to yours.
Find at Least Three Potential Attorneys
Don’t hire the first lawyer you encounter. Not all lawyers can handle your case in the same way. Find at least three attorneys that you can interview before selecting the best one. Narrow down your list of lawyers and try to interview each one. The lawyers must ask you a lot of questions, as well. Remember that the more questions you ask, the more you will understand the attorney’s communication approach, personality and breadth of knowledge. It is important that you hire a lawyer that specializes in the area law your case falls into (e.g. criminal appeals, DUI, civil rights, etc.) and one that has extensive experience handling cases comparable to yours. How a lawyers replies to your questions is very important, but communication is a two way street.
Plan for a First Consultation
Many lawyers can give you a free initial consultation to study your case, generally around 30 to 45 minutes. Make sure you have the necessary paperwork and documentation with you so you will be ready to give a broad overview of your case. Pay more attention to the professionalism of the lawyer and his staff than to the quality of the office. Because fees pay for everything, a plain office may denote that the lawyer is careful with money and does not spend it on appearances. What is more essential is the friendliness and efficiency of the lawyer and his staff.