7 Things You Should Know Before Hiring a Solicitor
1. Find a Legitimate Solicitor
Solicitors are some of the most highly regulated and monitored group of trained professionals in the UK. In order to stay in practice, they are normally required to register with a relevant governing body. Do not risk dealing with a solicitor who is not a member of any governing body.
2. The Solicitor’s Experience
Before you choose to work with any solicitor, you need to find out more about his or her background. You need to work with a solicitor who has been in practice for more than 5 years. This will not only make you feel confident, but will also increase your chances of winning your case or cases.
3. Check the Solicitor’s Reputation
One of the major factors that you should take into consideration before hiring the services of a solicitor is to check his/her reputation. It is very dangerous to deal with a solicitor whose reputation is soiled or damaged. With today’s technology, you can easily find out more about a solicitor on the internet or by getting in touch with your local law authorities.
Some solicitors have nothing to hide. They can allow you to communicate with some of their satisfied clients so as to know about their reputation. Given this opportunity, you can ask the references to give you the right information concerning your potential solicitor so that you can make the right decision.
4. How much will you be charged?
Most solicitors usually ask for retainer agreements from their clients before they start working. Therefore, it is very important that you negotiate the charges before you hire their services. Due to the fact that different solicitors offer their services at different rates, you should go for the one that offers affordable rates. However, you should ask for written statements that provide all the relevant details on the costs of every service and the regularity of payments. Look for a solicitor who offers his or her services at a flat-fee basis and not on an hourly basis, unless the Court gives a directive for limited purposes. In any case the solicitor intends to bill you on hourly basis, ask for monthly billing statements. This is to prevent the solicitor from sending you unexpected bills, emailing you, or calling you unnecessarily.
In order for you to get the best services from a solicitor, you should be very honest with him or her at all times. Do not try to provide wrong or misleading information as this might cause confusion. It is very important that you provide the solicitor with the correct information at all times so that he/she can also tell you that how your case/cases will play out. Additionally, a solicitor needs the correct information so as to give you the right advice and prepare adequately for a case.
Most importantly, you should know that there is always a solicitor-client privilege. This means that all the information shared between you and the solicitor, whether written or oral, remain confidential and cannot be shared with a third-party unless otherwise.
6. Area of Specialization
Different solicitors are experts in different fields of law. The different fields of law include education law, criminal law, employment and labor law, family and juvenile law, health law, real estate law, tax law, corporate and security law, international law, and accident/injury law. Knowing the field in which your case falls will help you in choosing the right solicitor to help you out.
7. Is the Solicitor Ready for Proactive Communication?
A number of solicitors are poor communicators. They will only respond to you when you ask questions. This is a bad indication and should be avoided early enough. A good solicitor should be ready to engage in proactive communication with you whenever necessary. This is to keep you informed on how your case is fairing on. You need to make an agreement with the solicitor on when and how to keep you informed. It is important that you get regular information on a weekly or monthly basis via email or text messages. Being informed enables you to know whether things are right or wrong so that you can do a proper planning.
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