I need legal help—what should I do?
Consulting a lawyer before you have a legal problem can save you money, time, and a lot of stress. A lawyer can assess your legal situation and help you to know what the next steps are and determine possible solutions. Here are some examples of when you should consult a lawyer:
- If you are involved in an accident that results in injuries or property damage.
- If you are making a will, living trust, or planning an estate.
- If your family situation is changing—whether through adoption, divorce, child custody, guardianship, etc.
- If you are involved in a land or other real estate dispute.
- If you are forming or expanding a business.
- If you are being sued by someone.
Why should I consult a lawyer?
A little bit of time spent with a knowledgeable lawyer goes a long way toward solving, or avoiding, a legal problem. In cases of personal injury, wrongful death, or employment discrimination or unpaid wages, our attorneys offer free initial consultations, so your questions can be answered without obligation on your part. In other types of cases, such as divorce, business planning and formation, or commercial contracts, an attorney can offer sound advice and suggestions that may save money and hassles down the road.
How do I choose an attorney?
Choosing the right attorney for you is very important, but knowing where to start the search can be overwhelming. Here are some ways you can find an experienced, affordable attorney:
- Get recommendations from family, friends, and coworkers who have had positive experiences with attorneys who have experience in the area of law you need.
- Search for attorneys online on sites such as:
- Visit the attorney’s website to answer basic questions you may have and to read about their experience. Many attorneys also have an email feature on their websites for you to email questions.
What should I expect at my first meeting with my lawyer?
Here are some tips on how to have a successful first meeting with your lawyer:
- Be prepared. Bring all relevant documents with you, even if you don’t think they are important. This will help your lawyer better understand your situation.
- Be truthful. Your lawyer will ask you detailed questions about your legal issue. Answering honestly and not leaving out any details will ensure that your lawyer can give you the most effective help.
- Have a goal. What do you hope to get out of this meeting?
- Ask questions. Here is a list of possible questions you may want to ask your lawyer:
- What kind of experience do you have in this area?
- Who else will be working with you on my case?
- Have you had any other cases like mine?
- What will the cost be?
- What are my other options for resolving this issue? Can I handle this by myself?
- What are the possible outcomes of my case?
- Who can I talk to at your office about my case?
- What do you need from me?
- How long will it take to resolve my legal issue?