Estate planning takes a very special kind of attorney, one who knows the financial markets and trends, as well as how they apply to your particular situation. Though it can be tempting to draw up your own plans and goals, you would be wise to have a legal consultant to guide you along the way. Read here about what to look for in a good estate attorney.
A good tip if you’re thinking about hiring a lawyer is to listen to your gut when it comes down to whether or not you’re going to hire that person. Your lawyer is going to represent you in court, so if your lawyer seems unscrupulous, it’s going to fall back on you.
If you go to see a lawyer for any legal reason and they tell you that your case will be simple, you should not hire them. Most legal cases have a lot of things involved with them, so it is not very likely that many cases can be that easy.
Be wary of handing over a huge retainer to a lawyer for taking your case. This may not be given back to you at the end of your trial. You also need to check with others, because there are attorneys that will charge you a small retainer, charging you later for anything additional.
If you have been in an accident, do not hire any lawyer that comes to you and tries to solicit your business. This is not only unethical, but it is against the law. You do not want to hire anyone to handle your legal case if you have to worry about their legal ethics.
Invest time into finding the right attorney. Don’t just hire the first person you hear about. Ask family and friends who they work with. Look up the person you are considering online and see if anyone left a testimonial regarding their work. You want to find a person that is going to help, not hurt, your case.
Once you have decided to hire a particular lawyer, make sure you receive a written retainer letter that specifically defines the scope of representation, the details of the services you are to receive and the applicable fee structure. By doing this, you will stand a much better chance of getting precisely what you bargained for and you will have useful documentation of the intended relationship should you need to pursue the lawyer in a malpractice action at some point.
When meeting with a prospective attorney, ask him or her who you will primarily be talking to about your case. In some situations, lawyers give part of their caseload to a junior associate. If you feel you really connect with a certain attorney, suddenly finding out you will be working with another person may be quite upsetting. These feelings could be exacerbated if you don’t get along with the other person, too.
Ask those you know for their lawyer recommendations. You may be surprised at the results here! People you would never have expected to know a good lawyer, may have the best connection of all. It’s this word of mouth recommendation that means the most, so take it seriously and make this your first step.
Don’t pick a lawyer based on an advertisement. You may be interested in someone that goes by “Justice Man” or “Strongarm,” but those personas are just to get your attention and your money. Many of these lawyers are compensating for their lack of professional skills. It’s always best to do some research on any lawyer before you choose one, and to avoid relying on billboards, radio, magazine and television ads.
Now that you understand more about how estate planning works and how an attorney can help, you can move forward with a well-informed plan. Seek referrals, do your research and get your new attorney on board as soon as you can.It is never too late to plan your future.