Hiring an Attorney: First Impressions Matter

When you are first contacting attorneys for help in any matter you might be unsure of how to go about it. Do you call and make an appointment? Do you just walk in? Can you just talk to them on the phone right now?

Just as a matter of industry standard most attorneys will not actually see you if you just walk into their office and ask to see them. Attorneys’ offices are more like doctor’s offices both in the need to make an appointment beforehand, sensitivity of information, and the fact that not all attorneys treat all kinds of legal ailments. This is for two reasons. First, attorneys are very busy, usually juggling multiple clients, cases, and appointments every day and may already be booked for the day. At our office, we usually need to book a new client appointment at least a week out just so we have the appropriate time free. Additionally, it is never a good idea to force your way onto the schedule of someone who works in an industry that regularly charges by the minute.

Secondly, all attorneys are required by the rules of professional ethics to do a conflict check to make sure they can actually represent you. In very basic terms an attorney cannot represent anyone who has an opposing interest to one of their current, or former clients. Any reputable attorney needs to know, before they schedule a meeting with you, your full name and a brief understanding of your circumstances. This means they need to know who you are and if you have an opposing party, who the opposing party is as well.

If you are trying to hire an attorney, you might find the first attorney you contact is not the right kind of attorney. For instance not all family law attorneys do adoption work, not all probate attorneys do TEDRA disputes, and, no, not all attorneys can just “help stop this person from suing me.” Simply asking for a consult without giving the attorney enough information about your situation may mean that the attorney you speak to may refer you to someone else better suited to help with your situation. If you call your attorney beforehand they may even do this before you schedule an appointment.

If you have questions or would like a phone consultation, call Limitless Law PLLC at (360) 685-0145 or use the “Ask an Attorney” link on our website to contact us today!