There are more than 1.33 million licensed attorneys active in the United States.
With so many options, how do you choose the right one?
Hiring any kind of lawyer is a big decision. But the stakes are particularly high when you need a civil litigation lawyer.
Keep reading for 8 questions you absolutely must ask before hiring a civil litigation lawyer to handle your case.
1. What is Your Educational Background?
It’s always a good idea to make sure the professional you hire for any kind of service is qualified to do their job.
Civil litigation lawyers have a bachelor’s degree in any field, but many choose a major that will prepare them for law school. They will then attend law school, earn their law degree, and pass the bar in the state where they want to practice.
Ask potential attorneys about their educational background and qualifications as well as how their education prepared them to handle a case like yours.
2. How Long Have You Been Practicing Law?
Experience is invaluable when it comes to legal matters.
While an attorney fresh out of law school could technically represent you, they won’t have the same experience as a lawyer who has been practicing for years. This is especially true when it comes to matters of civil litigation.
First-hand experience in the courtroom is how civil litigation lawyers become experts. While you might be able to hire an inexperienced civil litigation attorney for less money, you’ll get what you pay for.
3. What Type of Cases Do You Usually Handle?
Attorneys specialize in specific areas of law, much like how doctors focus on a single area of medicine.
Civil litigation attorneys specialize in handling civil matters and taking them to trial. While many attorneys practice in the area of civil law, not all of them are qualified to represent you in a trial.
Asking potential attorneys about the area(s) of law they practice in can give you a good idea of their experience and ability to handle your case.
4. What Type of Clients Do You Represent?
Another question you should ask potential civil litigation lawyers is what kind of clients they typically represent.
The goal is to choose an attorney who has worked with clients like yourself in the past. For example, some attorneys prefer to work with individuals on personal matters. Others do more work with corporations by handling their professional matters.
Asking an attorney about their other clients will help you decide if they are the right fit for your case. You might also ask if an attorney has any testimonials from satisfied current and former clients.
5. What is Your Experience in Handling Cases Like Mine?
Even within the realm of civil litigation, there are many different types of cases. The best way to evaluate whether a potential civil litigation lawyer is the best choice for your case is to ask whether they have relevant experience.
Even if they have handled civil litigation matters before, you want to know whether they have handled cases similar to yours. The specific elements of your case make it unique and you’ll have the best chance of winning if you hire a lawyer who has won cases like yours in the past.
6. Do You Have Any Additional Training or Experience That Might Be Relevant?
For the best civil litigation lawyers, education doesn’t stop with graduation.
Practicing law requires continuing education. The best civil litigation lawyers will keep up with relevant legal developments and always strive to improve their practice.
7. What Are Your Thoughts on My Case?
When hiring a lawyer, your initial consultation is an excellent opportunity to get a potential attorney’s thoughts on your case.
You can learn a lot about what to expect as far as your chances of winning your case as well as what the process will look like. You should start by asking potential civil litigation lawyers whether you have any other legal options other than taking your case to trial. They might have some other ideas that could save you time and money.
Civil litigation cases can take some time. When hiring an attorney, you should ask for a timeline and an idea of what to expect as your case progresses.
Who will be handling the case? Who should you contact for updates and questions and when can you expect a response?
You should also ask potential civil litigation attorneys about the approach they will take with your case. What is their style and how does it help them win cases?
Finding an attorney who is a good match for your personality and communication style isn’t always easy, but it’s well worth taking the time to ask the right questions.
8. What Are Your Fees and Costs?
It’s important to be on the same page as your attorney about how much and how you will pay for their services.
Some attorneys work on a contingency basis when taking a civil case to trial. Others will require payment regardless of the outcome of the case. Be sure to understand how often and how much you will be billed.
Do You Need a Civil Litigation Lawyer?
When you need to hire a civil litigation lawyer, you can’t afford to choose the wrong one.
If you need help with a civil litigation matter, we are here for you. You can trust our team of experienced legal professionals to treat your case as if it were our own.
Click here to contact us and schedule a consultation with a civil litigation attorney today.