Steps to Getting the Right Lawyer for Your Needs

By |2018-12-07T20:40:01-05:00February 9th, 2018|

Getting the Right LawyerDeciding you need a lawyer is itself a big decision, one that forces you to make yet another important decision – who? Finding the right lawyer may feel like a daunting task but it doesn’t have to be.

Before you start doing aimless internet searches, take a few minutes to clarify why you need a lawyer. Is your divorce becoming contentious? Are you starting a new business venture? Have you been accused of a crime?  Determining the kind and scope of legal services you need will go a long way towards making the final selection.

Once you’ve determined what kind of lawyer you want, it’s time to find an individual or a firm that has expertise and experience in your desired field.  Maybe you already know a lawyer or two socially; you should ask him or her for suggestions. Perhaps you have a family member or colleague who recently hired one they can recommend. But even if you can’t make a connection to an attorney through your existing personal network, there are still ways to find the right one.

There are a variety of objective, third-party services that can help you find as well as evaluate potential lawyers. Both Avvo and Martindale help you target legal professionals in the specialty area you need near you and they supply reviews from both clients and fellow attorneys. Next to suggestions from people you actually know, recommendations from other lawyers will be amongst the most valuable.

Law firms are pretty up-front about telling you what kinds of law they specialize in, and in the legal world, the experience is the best teacher. Look for someone with a long record of success with your legal issue. Everyone who goes to law school gains a common body of knowledge, but the real learning happens after graduation; nothing can beat real-life, on-point experience for honing a lawyer’s skills. You want a lawyer who has already handled cases just like yours – and comes out on top.

Once you have a short list of attorneys, it’s time to check out their or their firms’ websites. In this day and age, you can tell a lot about a company from its site. Is this a giant firm with offices on every continent, or a mom and pop style operation, or something in-between? Is this a warm and cozy firm that brings you tea and holds your hand, or is it an aggressive, litigious firm always geared up for a fight? Think about how your personal or professional situation might be better off in one than the other. Someone with modest assets doesn’t need an international conglomerate to draft a basic will, but a firm about to launch a new product around the globe might.

Now that you have just a few potential lawyers on your list, reach out and make appointments to meet them. Some lawyers are happy to do a free initial consultation so that you can each see if the business relationship will be a good fit. (Beware the high-powered lawyer who charges hundreds of dollars an hour just to hear your story; those high fees will likely continue if you hire him.)  This is your chance to ask questions about experiences with other cases like yours. Most lawyers are happy to tell you about their successes and how long they’ve been in practice. All you have to do is ask.

You might wonder if you need a lawyer with an office near you, or if geography isn’t important. Although nowadays many business transactions can be conducted over the internet, legal issues don’t fall into this category. Not only might you need a local lawyer if your issue winds up in court, but lawyers are licensed to practice by individual states. And although some states recognize the licensing of other states, many do not. You don’t want to hire someone to be your lawyer if they cannot practice as a lawyer in your home state.

One other factor you should not overlook when hiring an attorney is cost. Some lawyers charge flat fees, for more routine services, but many charges by the hour (or fraction of the hour); a complicated legal issue will accrue larger bills because it takes longer to resolve. Know what you are willing to spend and don’t be afraid to ask questions about fees and payments.

Of paramount importance in choosing an attorney is trust. You must trust him to do everything he can to resolve your issue in your favor. You will have to share all the details of your legal situation, whether you are in the midst of a custody dispute or a commercial real estate transaction. Your lawyer is someone you may spend quite a bit of time with, so you need to be comfortable with him as a person.

Levoritz Law Firm can check off all of these boxes.  With decades of combined experience across a wide spectrum of legal specialty areas, our attorneys are exceptionally well-reviewed by both clients and peers. We provide the responsiveness of a small firm with the expansive knowledge and experience seldom found outside large firms. Our clients are consistently satisfied with the “bang for the buck” we provide, with attorneys ready to provide for your needs small and large, domestic and international, personal and professional. Complicated problems demand sophisticated solutions. Click here to schedule a free initial consultation or call us at 718-942-4004.

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  6. Ellen Hughes October 31, 2018 at 7:22 am

    It sure was nice that you suggested making appointments to meet the lawyer that you’re interested in so you can find out how experienced they are in handling a case like yours. A close friend of mine is looking to file a domestic assault case for her sister. She said that she’d like to find a lawyer that has won domestic assault cases in the past because she’d like to make sure that her sister will have a favorable outcome in the court. Thanks!

  7. Ellen H.e November 1, 2018 at 1:34 am

    Thanks for pointing out that making appointments with a lawyer will give an opportunity to ask them about their experiences in handling a case like yours. I will make sure to share what you said with my friend who’s planning to file for a medical malpractice case for her sister. She said that she’d like to make sure that the lawyer that she will hire has a history of winning medical malpractice cases because she’d like to ensure a favorable result for her sister.

  8. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 2, 2018 at 1:47 am

    I like that you pointed out that meeting the lawyers that you’re interested in will give you the chance to know how experienced they are in handling a case like yours. My husband and I are interested in estate planning. We’d like to draft our estate plan without violating any laws that can void our estate plan. Since we’re not familiar with estate planning procedures, we’ll be sure to find a lawyer that knows the ins and outs of estate planning.

  9. Ellen Hughes November 2, 2018 at 2:07 am

    I like that you suggested choosing a lawyer that has a long record of success in the area of the law where you need their help. My mother is planning to have her will drafted. She said that she’d like to make sure that she can find a lawyer that knows exactly how her living should be created because she’d like to make sure that it won’t violate legal laws. I’ll help her find a will attorney that’s an expert.

  10. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 3, 2018 at 1:51 am

    I like that you said that you should determine how much you’re willing to spend to find a lawyer that can meet your needs when it comes to payment and fees. My sister is planning to hire a wrongful death lawyer for her husband. She said that the passing of her husband has greatly reduced her income, so she’d like to deal with a wrongful death lawyer that can work for her given her budget. Thanks!

  11. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 3, 2018 at 5:55 am

    I like that you said that you will have the chance to ask a lawyer about their experiences in handling a case like yours if you will meet them. My husband and I are planning to adopt a child soon. We’d like to make sure that the lawyer that we will hire can properly guide us in understanding the adoption process and the laws that we have to consider, so we’ll definitely find an expert in the adoption process.

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  13. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 5, 2018 at 11:56 pm

    It was such a relief to know that there are lawyers that can offer you free consultations so you can see first if they will be a good fit for you. My husband and I are planning to hire a family law attorney because we’re looking to adopt a child. We expect for the adoption process to be tedious and long, so we’d like to find a family law attorney that we can work with without having to feel uneasy all throughout the process. Thanks!

  14. Sharon Wilson-Smiths November 7, 2018 at 1:21 am

    You got me when you said that you must choose a lawyer that specializes in the law where you need their help to make sure that they are experienced enough. I will make sure to remember this because my best friend needs the help of a lawyer that can handle her employment discrimination case. He said that he’d like to ensure that he will get a favorable outcome for his case so he can move on with his life without having to remember bad experiences while working. Thanks!

  15. Beth Arlington November 8, 2018 at 12:02 am

    I like that you said that you can check Avvo and Martindale to find a lawyer that specializes in the area of the law where you need their help. I will share this with my best friend because she’s planning to hire a domestic violence attorney. She’d like to make sure that the lawyer that she will hire has a good record of winning domestic violence cases in the past to ensure that they are experienced enough to help her. Thanks!

  16. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 8, 2018 at 11:53 pm

    I like that you said that you should choose a lawyer that’s experienced in dealing with the type of your legal issue. My husband is planning to hire a traffic violation lawyer. He said that he wanted to ensure a favorable result at court since he doesn’t want to be penalized for a big amount. I’ll help him find a lawyer that won traffic violation cases in the past.

  17. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 9, 2018 at 1:55 am

    I like that you said that it’s important to choose a lawyer that you can trust to resolve your issue since you can expect to spend time with them. This is something that I will make sure to share with my sister because she’s planning to hire a workers compensation attorney. She said that she wanted to make sure that the lawyer that she will hire won’t make her feel awkward and uneasy when she’s sharing the details of her case.

  18. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 9, 2018 at 4:47 am

    Thanks for pointing out that you can ask for recommendations for a lawyer from a colleague who may have hired a lawyer in the past. My aunt is looking to hire a disability attorney, but she doesn’t know where she can find a reliable disability attorney. I remember that my best friend’s mother recently filed a disability claim. I’ll make sure to ask the name of the lawyer that her mom hired so I can help my aunt.

  19. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 9, 2018 at 11:15 pm

    I like that you suggested checking the website of the law firm that you’re interested in so you can determine if their office looks cozy and warm. My husband and I are planning to hire a real estate attorney that can help us in buying a house. We’d like to make sure that the office of the real estate attorney that we will choose has great staff members and has spacious spaces to make sure that meeting them can make us feel comfortable.

  20. Kiara Woodsland November 10, 2018 at 12:11 am

    I like that you said that you can ask a colleague or a family member who may have hired a lawyer for some recommendations. My aunt needs the help of an immigration attorney as soon as possible, but she doesn’t know who she should hire. I remember that my best friend told me that she had to hire an immigration attorney for his brother, so maybe I can ask the name of the lawyer that she hired.

  21. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 13, 2018 at 12:47 am

    It sure was nice to know that there are lawyers who are willing to provide free consultation which can allow you to determine if they will be a good fit for you. This is a nice tip for me because I need to hire a civil rights attorney as soon as possible. My budget for my case is limited, so I’d like to make sure that the civil rights attorney that I will choose won’t charge me for a high amount when all I want is to get to know them.

  22. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 13, 2018 at 11:36 pm

    I like that you said that it’s best to meet a lawyer so you can have the chance to ask them about their experiences in handling a case like yours. My friend needs the help of a workers compensation attorney that can support his claim. He said that he wanted to make sure that his employer won’t deny the benefits that he should get after getting injured, so he wanted to deal with a workers compensation attorney that has successfully handled workers compensation cases in the past.

  23. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 15, 2018 at 1:50 am

    I like that you said that it’s important that you’re aware of how much you’re willing to spend for your case since there are lawyers that can charge you on an hourly basis. With that in mind, I’ll be sure to interview the estate planning lawyer that I will hire so I can discuss payments and fees. My mother has a limited budget, so she’d like to make sure that she’ll be able to hire an estate planning lawyer that she can afford. Thanks!

  24. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 16, 2018 at 12:13 am

    You got me when you said that there are lawyers who offer a free consultation so you can have the chance to check if they can be a good fit for you. With that in mind, I’ll make sure to interview the child custody attorneys that I’m interested in so I can check if they can make me feel comfortable when they are around. I don’t have a big budget for the child custody case that I’m looking to file, so I’ll be sure to only meet lawyers that won’t charge me right away.

  25. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 16, 2018 at 12:44 am

    It sure was nice when you said that you will have the chance to find out the experiences of a lawyer when you meet them for a consultation. My mother will surely appreciate what you said because she’s looking to hire a disability attorney. According to her, she’s totally clueless about the process of disability claims, so she wanted to find a lawyer that’s well versed in handling a case like hers.

  26. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 16, 2018 at 3:51 am

    I like that you said that you can interview a lawyer so you can have the chance to ask about their successes and experiences. A close friend of mine wanted to protect her intellectual property so he can have peace of mind that he won’t have to worry about intellectual property theft. What he wants is to get a legal help from a lawyer that’s well versed in handling patent prosecution because he’d like to be aware of what he can expect during the patent process. Thanks!

  27. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 16, 2018 at 5:59 am

    It caught my attention when you said that there are lawyers that can charge you on an hourly basis, and there are lawyers that require flat fees. My husband was charged with a DUI case, so he’s looking to hire a lawyer to get help. He’d like to make sure that hiring a lawyer won’t require him to break his bank since he has a limited budget for the entire process. Thanks!

  28. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 17, 2018 at 12:40 am

    It was such a relief to know that there are lawyers that don’t charge fees when you consult them to know if they will be a good fit for you. My friend is planning to hire a social security disability attorney that can help her. She said that she wanted to find a lawyer that won’t make her feel uneasy when she’s with them. Since her priority is to find a lawyer that she can afford and can make her feel comfortable, I’ll share your blog with her.

  29. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 17, 2018 at 2:52 am

    It sure was nice when you said that you can meet the lawyer that you’re interested in so you can find out more about their successes and experiences. This is a nice tip for my friend because she’s planning to hire a harassment attorney. She said that she’d like to make sure that she will win the case that she will file, so she’d like to find a harassment attorney that has a high success rate. Thanks!

  30. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 20, 2018 at 12:10 am

    You got me when you said that there are lawyers that can charge you on an hourly rate, so it’s important to consider the cost. My sister is planning to hire a social security attorney for her claim. She’d like to make sure that her savings are enough to pay for the lawyer’s fees, so I’ll ask her to get quotes from different social security attorneys first.

  31. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 20, 2018 at 4:47 am

    I like that you said that meeting a lawyer can help you to find out if you can have a good business relationship with them. My husband and I are planning to hire an estate planning lawyer. This process is going to be personal and private for us, so we’d like to make sure that the estate planning lawyer that we will hire can allow us to share our goals with them without feeling too awkward. Thanks!

  32. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 21, 2018 at 12:46 am

    You got me when you said that there are lawyers that can charge you on an hourly basis which is why it’s important to consider the cost in hiring a lawyer. My brother is planning to hire a military family lawyer. He said that he’d like to make sure that his savings are enough for the divorce case that he’s looking to file. He can’t run out of the budget. Thanks for sharing this.

  33. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 22, 2018 at 12:01 am

    I agree that it’s important to hire a lawyer that you can comfortably trust since you can expect to spend time with the lawyer that you will hire. My sister is planning to hire a trial attorney. She said that she’d like to make sure that the trial attorney that she will hire won’t make her feel uneasy so it will be easier for her to deal with her case. Thanks!

  34. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 22, 2018 at 1:24 am

    I like that you said that it’s best to meet the lawyer that you’d like to hire so you can have the chance to ask them about their experiences in handling a case like yours. My brother needs the help of a DUI defense attorney. He mentioned to me that he can’t afford to pay for expensive penalties, so he’d like to find a lawyer that has a proven record of successful DUI cases in the past.

  35. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 28, 2018 at 3:01 am

    I like that you said that there are lawyers that can charge you on an hourly rate, and there are lawyers that can charge you flat fees. My husband is planning to hire a real estate attorney. He said that he wanted to make sure that he won’t be charged for an amount that he can’t afford since he has a limited income. I will make sure to help him gather some quotes.

  36. Sharon Wilson-Smith November 29, 2018 at 2:22 am

    It was nice to know that there are lawyers that offer free consultations where you can find out if they can be a good fit for you. My best friend is planning to hire a probate lawyer. She mentioned that she’s expecting the entire probate process to take months, so it’s important for her to find a lawyer that won’t make her feel uneasy when they are around. I will share your blog with her.

  37. Carolien Samson November 29, 2018 at 2:38 am

    Thanks for pointing out that meeting a lawyer for a consultation can give you the chance to know more about their experiences and successes in handling a case like yours. A close friend of mine is planning to hire a worker’s compensation lawyer. She said that her worker’s compensation claim was denied more than once, so she wanted to make sure that the lawyer that she will hire knows exactly how her claim can be approved. What she wants is to find an attorney that’s well versed in dealing with denied workers compensation claims. Thanks!

  38. Sharon Wilson-Smith December 1, 2018 at 4:43 am

    I like that you said that you can have the chance to ask about the experiences of a lawyer in handling a case like yours when you meet them for a consultation. My husband had an accident on a construction site. He badly needs to be supported so he can pay for his medical needs. This is the reason why we want to find him a construction accident lawyer that knows exactly what should be done for him to win the case.

  39. Deborah Adams December 1, 2018 at 5:28 am

    It was interesting to know that there are lawyers that can offer you a free consultation that can help you to determine if they can be a good fit for you. A close friend of mine is looking to hire a lawyer that can help her parents because they want to file for a grandparent’s rights case. My friend mentioned that her parents want to make sure that they won’t feel uneasy while sharing the details of their case with a lawyer because they want a stress-free process. Thanks!

  40. Sharon Wilson-Smith December 4, 2018 at 12:22 am

    You got me when you said that you can see if a lawyer can be a good fit for you when you meet them for an initial consultation. My aunt said that he’s planning to hire an immigration lawyer soon. She mentioned that she doesn’t want to feel awkward while she’s working with an immigration lawyer so she can be sure that the entire case will smoothly run. Thanks for sharing this.

  41. Sharon Wilson-Smith December 4, 2018 at 12:37 am

    Thanks for pointing out that you should consider hiring a lawyer that has the right skills and the experience to handle a case like yours. My husband and I are interested in hiring an estate planning attorney soon. We’d like to make sure that we can be properly guided on the process, so we wanted to make sure that we will only deal with an estate planning attorney that knows the ins and outs of writing an estate plan.

  42. Sharon Wilson-Smith December 4, 2018 at 1:01 am

    It caught my attention when you said that there are a lot of lawyers that charge on an hourly basis to make sure that you’ll be aware if you will be charged for large bills. My husband and I are planning to hire a real estate attorney that can help us in closing a deal. We’d like to make sure that we won’t be charged for fees that we can’t afford because we have to consider the expenses in buying a house. Since we don’t want to struggle financially, we’ll shop for quotes.

  43. Sharon Wilson-Smith December 4, 2018 at 2:26 am

    I agree that it’s important to hire a lawyer that can make you feel comfortable because you can expect to share all the details of your case with them. My husband was charged with a DUI case. He mentioned that he wanted to make sure that it won’t be difficult for him to narrate what his case is all about, so he’d like to find a DUI lawyer that he can work well with.

  44. Sharon Wilson-Smith December 6, 2018 at 2:27 am

    I like that you said that there are lawyers who offer a free initial consultation so you will have the chance to determine if they will be a good fit for you. My sister is looking to hire a personal injury lawyer. She’s an extremely shy person, so she wanted to find a personal injury lawyer that won’t make her feel uneasy when she needs to share the details of her case. Thanks for sharing this.

  45. Sharon Wilson-Smith December 6, 2018 at 2:35 am

    I agree that it’s important to make sure that you won’t overlook the cost of hiring a lawyer since there are lawyers that charge you by the hour. My best friend is looking to hire a legal malpractice attorney. She said that she’s a tight budget, so she wants to find a legal malpractice attorney that can meet her budget. I will help her get quotes from different legal malpractice attorneys. Thanks!

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