Ways to Find a Lawyer

Finding a good lawyer is as far as many of us go when it comes to dealing with legal issues, leaving said lawyer to handle the case and all the complicated legal-talk from there onwards. For that very reason however it’s crucial that you pick the right man or woman for the job, otherwise you could cost yourself a fair bit of money or just dealing with an arrogant hot head.

Locating a good lawyer isn’t always easy however and many people have no idea how to go about it. Of course one place to find local lawyers is in the phone book, or looking online. Of course the problem with this method however is that you have no information (other than the biased marketing spiel presented on the websites) regarding the actual quality of said lawyer. Of course you will stand a slightly better chance of avoiding Delboy-types if you go through a respected law firm but you still won’t know exactly what you’re getting.

One much better way to get information regarding lawyers then is to get personal referrals. Ask friends and families if they have know any good lawyers and if they can recommend them. Some people with have their own lawyer that they call on for all their legal cases – as that lawyer is getting repeat business it’s a fairly safe bet that they’re at least competent at what they do. Similarly if you know of someone who’s had the same problem as you – say an accident at work – then you could get in contact with them and ask who they used and whether or not their case was successful. Don’t take these referrals to be 100% accurate as different people have different opinions, so you should try to get information from as many sources as possible. Similarly if you don’t know any friends with good lawyers you may be able to get referrals from businesses and possibly even your place of work. This can be particularly helpful if you run a small business yourself and are looking for a business lawyer. Professional ‘lawyer referral’ services exist and can often be found online that provide quick and comprehensive guidance.

You may even get lucky however and have a lawyer as a friend, or a friend of a friend. In these cases you have the benefit of there being a pre-existing relationship and the lawyer will most likely want to do right by you. However this can also be risky as they say not to mix friendship and business and it’s possible that a friend might take more liberties than a third party, or that disagreements or failure on their part could strain your relationship. Consider the person and your relationship to them then decide if it’s a wise move.

Once you have a name you should look into their records and history. Many directories provide this option such as Nolo, MartinDale or Findlaw. Using such a directory you can check that your prospective lawyer has a valid license, has passed their Bar test and a bit more information from their personal profile such as their experience, history and philosophy of practicing. This way you can get a good idea of how much expertise your lawyer and a brief glimpse of their professional history.