Getting Started

Finding the Right Attorney

Hiring an attorney that’s a good fit for you will depend on a number of factors, including the nature and complexity of your legal needs, the urgency with which they need to be addressed, and the anticipated costs associated with the attorney’s representation. 

Here are some questions to ask a prospective attorney when trying to find the one that is right for you.

General Information/Qualifications:
  • How long have you been practicing?
  • In what areas of law do you practice and do you have a specialty or area of practice?
  • What's your current caseload?
  • How many trials do you handle in an average year?
  • Tell me about your law office.
Managing My Case:
  • What information will you need me to provide at the initial interview?
  • How complicated are the areas of law at issue in my case?
  • How will you handle my case?
  • How long will it take to resolve my legal issues?
  • What are the strengths and weaknesses of my case?
  • What are the possible outcomes of my case?
  • What are the various options  available for resolving my legal issues?
  • What are the strengths and weaknesses of each approach?
Fees and Expenses:
  • Do you charge for an initial consultation?
  • How are your fees determined?
  • Do you charge by the hour, and if so, what is your hourly rate?
  • What's a contingency fee, and is it available in my case?
  • Are there other possible fee arrangements that might be appropriate in my case?
  • How will I be billed?
  • How are expenses handled?
  • What payment methods do you offer?
  • Is it possible to recover attorney fees from the other side?

Things to Think About Before the First Meeting

In addition to having questions ready for the prospective attorney, there are questions that you will want to consider and facts you should to be prepared to share so that you can give the attorney the most complete picture possible.

Here are some things for you to think about before your first meeting.
  • What do you want to accomplish? What are your goals?
  • How would you prioritize your goals?
  • Have you gathered all the documents associated with your case? Always err on bringing more rather than less.
  • Have you organized your thoughts so that you can tell your story in a concise and coherent manner?
  • If your case cannot be handled on a contingency basis, what are you willing to pay in attorney's fees?