“Help! I need a lawyer. What do I do?”
I hear this all the time from my friends, my family and even my clients. It’s true, you never know what life is going to throw your way and when you might need an attorney. Fender bender? Call the lawyer. Tree fall in your neighbor’s yard? Call the lawyer. Recent death of a great aunt, twice-removed? Call the lawyer.
I want to take a minute in this blog to give you tips how to find the right attorney for you in whatever crisis you are facing. Of course, you can always call our firm for a referral of a lawyer you need – after all who better to refer a lawyer in your particular situation than a lawyer you already trust? But there may be times when we don’t personally know an attorney in the field you are looking to hire an attorney in.
How do you find the right lawyer for the challenge you are facing? Let me give you a few quick tips to help guide you through finding the right attorney for you.
1. Friends, family and colleagues. There is nothing better than finding a lawyer through a referral from family, friends or business associates. These people are going to give you an honest answer. A trusted person who has experience with an attorney that handled his or her particular case, has good information about the lawyer’s skill, personality, experience, accessibility and the firm’s staff’s competence and friendliness. You can ask directly or post a general request on social media to reach more persons and obtain more information.
2. The Virginia Bar Association. When in doubt, you can always ask our bar association for a referral based on your type of case. Our bar association has a referral service that will give you the name and contact information for at least three lawyers with experience in the field.
3. Google. It’s true. You can find out more and more about a law firm on Google. This includes reviews, the lawyer’s website, directions to the practice, and much, much more. Use Google to learn more about the attorney. You might be surprised to find your very question answered already on the lawyer’s website.
No matter who gives you information, however, you still have to research the lawyer’s knowledge on your particular problem. You also have to feel comfortable with the attorney who are hiring. Don’t hesitate to make a list of what you want and what you don’t want out of this relationship. It will help you find the right attorney for you.