“You’ll be hearing from my lawyer,” “don’t say another word until you talk to your lawyer,” “I’ll have my lawyer contact you,” – – anyone who’s grown up watching television dramas, or watched or read any of John Grisham’s films or books is familiar with this legal vernacular. But how do you obtain a lawyer, does everyone need a lawyer at all times and how does an individual go about choosing the right lawyer for their particular needs?
Choosing the right representation is crucial to receiving the best service, and the type of lawyer someone seeks is entirely dependent on the type of law involved in the matter or case. The most important step is choosing an attorney who is an expert in the type of law that needs to be practiced. You wouldn’t hire an environmental attorney to handle a custody issue, just as you wouldn’t hire a family law attorney to guide you in your business law endeavors.
Business owners should seek attorneys who know business law, including the legal process for business formation, the types of business entities available (i.e., sole proprietorships, limited liability companies,
corporations (s-corp, c-corp), and partnerships), the common legal issues related to a business’ operation, and the process for dissolution of a business, for example. A good business law attorney will also know the business climate in which they are practicing.
Below are some standard guidelines to consider when choosing the right lawyer for your particular needs:
- Recommendations (friends, business associates, colleagues, family, other attorneys)
- Experience (expert in the areas of law that they claim to practice, how long)
- Ease of Communication (is the lawyer responsive, do you trust what the lawyer is saying)
- Responsibility for Work Performed (who will handle your case, your attorney or a paralegal)