Hiring an attorney can be a daunting task. How do you choose one? How do you know what type of lawyer to hire? What’s it like to work with an attorney and how do you know what’s expected of you? These are all questions you’re likely to have while browsing the website of an attorney, but don’t worry—we’re here to help.
Every firm’s site is filled with the same, boastful claims and pages and pages of legal speak that aren’t immediately useful. What’s useful? Answers. Real answers. Every two weeks roughly, we’ll be posting a common question a client new to the legal world might have, and we’ll provide real, honest answers to that question.
This week we’re discussing a question that many people new to the legal world may wonder: What’s it like to work with a lawyer?
Contacting lawyers and arranging meetings to speak with them in person can be a little intimidating. It’s important to remember that lawyers—just like all professionals—are human beings and have a job to do. A lawyer’s job is to fight for you, the client, by representing you in a court of law. A good lawyer will be able to help you come up with a plan of action, answer any questions you may have, and help you feel comfortable almost immediately. This is the type of lawyer you want representing you.
While working with a lawyer, two things will be established very early on in the process—the specifics of your case, and your goals for the case. You’ll be asked many questions, naturally, and you’ll often need to explain things in great detail, but once those two necessary points are established, it will be up to you to decide if working together would best serve your interests.
Once the groundwork for your case is in place, you’ll each have a list of things that need to be taken care of. Documents will need to be brought in and phone calls will usually need to be made. In the case of a personal injury lawsuit, your “homework” may be more involved. Your lawyer may need to contact key eyewitnesses, for example, or you may need to request medical records and other vital documents. Taking care of all tasks in a timely manner is of the utmost importance. A good lawyer will take care of everything on their end in a timely manner as well.
Communication is also of the utmost importance. Be honest and upfront about everything early on. Make a list of important questions to ask your lawyer before each meeting, and try not to get hung up on the “legal speak”. If there’s something you don’t understand, ask. Also, don’t hesitate to call your lawyer’s office at any time if questions should arise later. Your lawyer is there to represent you in court, but also help you through every step of filing a case and seeing it through.
If, at any time, you disagree with your lawyer, you should be honest and speak your mind. Remember, it’s completely up to you—the client—to decide on the goals of the case. You hire an attorney to speak on your behalf and to suggest the best path for achieving your goals, but ultimately, any decision-making process is within your control.
Working with a lawyer may seem intimidating at first, but once you get a feeling for how the entire process will work, you can begin to relax while knowing your legal matters will soon be under control. Your lawyer will help make every step—from filling out seemingly endless piles of paperwork to showing up in court and choosing witnesses—manageable and as painless as possible. There will be tasks you’ll both have to complete, of course, but progress will happen. One step at a time, you and your lawyer will work together to see a resolution to your case.
If you’re located in the state of Kentucky, Louisville, KY personal injury lawyer Tad Thomas and his expert team of attorneys are more than happy to set up an initial meeting to speak with you regarding your case. Mr. Thomas and his associates at Thomas Law Offices understand the importance of a solid lawyer-client relationship that’s built on trust, teamwork, compassion, honesty, and integrity. Contact our offices today to find out more.