Our office gets countless calls throughout the day from people looking for a lawyer. People generally ask the same few questions: What is this going to cost? How long will the process take? What outcome can you predict? Unfortunately, these are the wrong questions to ask. Just as lawyers “interview” clients during consultations to determine if they are a good fit for their firm, clients should interview lawyers as well. At a minimum, clients should ask their prospective lawyer the following questions before hiring them:
- How long have you been practicing law in this area?
- How do your fees work? Do you provide a written fee agreement?
- What percentage of your practice is in this area?
- Who from your firm will be working on my case?
- What are your procedures for notifying me of case updates/information? How do you communicate?
- What is your case strategy/philosophy? How do you prepare for trials? Settlement negotiations?
These questions should be asked prior to hiring any lawyer or law firm, to save both the client and lawyer time and frustration.