What You Should Know about Hiring an Attorney in Chicago
Legal services are similar to any other product: the wise consumer should do comprehensive 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.
Lawyers, accountants, psychologists, financial planners, and other professionals encounter and work with other lawyers during the course of their work and can frequently give you a great referral. Ask them for several names of attorneys who have good reputations and are more than qualified to take on your case. Lawyers, especially, have a thorough knowledge of the reputations of other lawyers, even those outside their specialization, so a lawyer you already know can be a good starting point. You may also discuss with your friends or family members who have been through a case comparable to yours.
Narrow it Down to at Least Three Potential Attorneys
Don’t hire the first lawyer you see. Not all lawyers can handle your case in the same way. Look for at least three attorneys that you can speak with before choosing the best one. Narrow down your list of lawyers and try to interview each one. Candidates should ask you a lot of questions, as well. Do not forget that the more questions you ask, the more you will get to know the attorney’s communication approach, personality and depth of knowledge. Obviously, you need to hire a lawyer that specializes in the field of law your case is involved in (e.g. criminal appeals, DUI, civil rights, etc.) and one that has experience in dealing with particular cases similar to yours. How a lawyers replies to your questions is very important, but communication is a two way street.
Make Your First Appointment
Many lawyers can give you a free initial consultation to study your case, generally around 30 to 45 minutes. Make sure you bring the relevant paperwork and documentation with you so you are all set to give a general overview of your situation. Consider the professionalism of the lawyer and his staff as top priority, instead of 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 vital is the friendliness and efficiency of the lawyer and his staff.