Once you realize that you need to select a lawyer, a number of questions are likely running through your head. You want to ensure that you select the best one that fits your budget and the issue or issues that you are facing and that you can see yourself working well personality-wise. However, those are just a few of the factors that you should contemplate when researching lawyers.
Regardless of these other factors, make sure to consider a few lawyers. This is an area that you want to ensure that you do your due diligence with; conversely, only considering one lawyer is not recommended.
Ask others about their opinions of who you are considering. Focus on the ones from those you trust, but do also ask those lawyers for a list of references, keeping in mind that these people will surely be ones who were satisfied with the work that was done for them. Another option to consider is asking other attorneys about their opinions of the ones you are considering.
Also research their backgrounds, seeing if they have received any complaints or disciplinary sanctions.
Do these attorneys at San Antonio law firms and elsewhere communicate well with you? Of course, solid communication skills are essential in that line of work, but you also want to see if their communication style fits yours. In addition, determine if they know when to communicate with you and about what. It is important for them to keep you in the loop as necessary but to also not over communicate.
Does the attorney or firm have the resources to handle your case? This is an especially important question if your case is a complex one. If it is, you may want to focus more on large firms.
Do also ensure that if you take advantage of a larger firm, you understand who is working on your case and with what aspects of it. You may also want to inquire about its use of support staff and paralegals and how that will influence your case.
In most cases, you will want to ensure that your lawyer is familiar with your region. For example, San Antonio law firms would be well versed in the laws that relate to Bexar County. Conversely, if you are looking for assistance with federally related matters, attorneys from outside the region may be best. Regardless, if your legal needs can be handled locally, it is usually better to work with attorneys based in the area as in-person communication tends to be preferred, at least from time to time.
A lawyer may fit all of these other factors that you are considering, but if they do not have the right legal experience and knowledge as they relate to what you are hiring them for, none of the rest matters.
Of course, cost should not be overemphasized when deciding on a lawyer, but it is an important element of this decision.
You will also want to consider the different types of costs that you may end up being responsible for. Many lawyers bill by the hour in addition to disbursements, such as court filing fees and couriers. Some simply charge a flat rate; this is usually done in relation to wills or real estate transactions. Another option is a contingency agreement, meaning that nearly all costs would only be paid by you if the case is won. This payment method is usually applied to personal injury cases.