What to look for when hiring a lawyer
• Does the attorney specialize in cases like yours?
• Is their office conveniently located near your home or workplace?
• How much experience does he / she have in cases like yours?
• How long has he / she been in practice and if he / she is properly licensed.
You can check with the Better Business Bureau or the local Chamber of Commerce to confirm your lawyer’s credentials.
Other important items to consider:
• What outcome can he/she predict for your case?
• What alternatives to a lawsuit might be considered?
• Will he/she be the lead person working on my case or will others be assisting in the case?
• Ask for a preliminary outline of how the case should be handled and a time frame for its resolution.
• Get an estimate (in writing) of the lawyer’s approximate total fee...what the case is likely to cost.
• How does the lawyer charge for their services? Can I afford to pay for their services? Do they charge hourly rates, flat fees, retainers/contingent fees; basically, how they will actually bill you?
• Ask for references...3 to 5 current and past clients...and carefully make sure to check them out thoroughly.
• What is his or her professional reputation?
• Have they ever been the subject of an ethics or disciplinary complaint?
• Have they ever been sued for legal malpractice?
• Have they ever gone to arbitration or court over their fees?