What To Do When Meeting your Lawyer for the First Time.
When meeting your lawyer for the first time, make sure you are as prepared as you can be. The more that you have ready before your initial meeting, the easier it is for your attorney to understand your situation and determine if you have a valid case.
- Bring all documents.Make copies of all the documents you have collected regarding your case. Give these copies to the lawyer.
- Get organized and take notes!Write down notes outlining your legal problems, or any questions you may have. The lawyer must have your details in order to decide what is important and how to move forward in your best interests.
- Dress for success.Even though you may be very emotional about your case, dress as if you are going to a business meeting or applying for a job. You will feel in control, which is important.
- Be honest.It is very important that you give an honest account of your legal problems. This includes issues that may be sensitive to you or your family. Remember that the conversation you have with your lawyer is private and cannot be discussed with others without your permission.
- Talk about how much this will cost you.Your lawyer will be ready to discuss fees during your first meeting. You should be ready to do the same. It is perfectly normal to discuss payment plans with your lawyer. Get your agreement in writing and keep a copy for your file.
- Ask your lawyer questions.In order for your lawyer to serve you better, you must understand your case and the legal process. But remember, you are paying for your lawyer’s time. It is more cost effective to ask several questions at once. If you call your lawyer every single time you have a question, you may be charged for each call.
- Read all documents carefully before signing.Before you sign a document, ask your lawyer to fully explain to you what exactly it is that you are signing. If you do not understand what the document is about that you are being asked to sign, ask your lawyer to explain it to you again.
- Keep your own files.Do not hesitate to ask for copies of all letters and documents prepared on your case. You should also keep the written fee agreement between you and your lawyer for your records.
- Listen to your lawyer.Listen to your lawyer and think about what your lawyer asks you to do. The lawyer’s judgment is based on legal training and experience. Remember that lawyers cannot work magic. No lawyer wins every case, and sometimes the best legal advice may not be what you want to hear. Your lawyer will provide advice that has your best interests in mind.