When dealing with matters of the law, you may feel more comfortable having a lawyer represent you. This is probably the case when facing criminal charges or when you are being sued by another party. In these cases, you would be better off hiring a defense lawyer Cleveland OH or a small claims attorney. Though you may not always need a lawyer to resolve your issue, it can definitely help. However, before you completely trust everything you are told, there are a few things you should know about lawyers and the legal process.
1. Fees Are Negotiable
Don’t agree to the first price you are quoted because you are desperate for help. Everyone has a budget, and you will find some attorneys who are more affordable than others. In addition to obtaining several quotes, generally through a free consultation, try to negotiate the fee. Some lawyers will be able to reduce their fees, and it is worth a try to require a lower rate.
2. Invoices Are Eye-Opening
When you settle on a lawyer that bills by the hourly rate, you are taking their word that they actually spent the amount of time billed. However, you should carefully look at each line item you are being billed for, questioning vague charges. Some attorneys will charge for every piece of paper used, including the ones sent out as your invoice. Always review any charge.
3. Referrals Aren’t Always Good
If you are asking your lawyer for a referral for another area of professional help, such as a counselor or tax attorney, take the referral with a grain of salt. You may not be given the number of the best office in town, but rather an old college buddy that is practicing in a certain area. If you get the same name from multiple people, chances are you’ve gotten good advice.
Lawyers can’t solve all your legal problems, but they can help you navigate through them. Make sure you are aware of what is going and who you are trusting with your information.