It's not something anyone wants to do, but there may come a point when you need to hire a lawyer. If you don't have the expertise to handle a legal matter on your own, it's imperative to bring a lawyer into the fold as soon as possible. This can help you win your case, thus putting your trouble in the past once and for all.
Many people shy away from hiring a lawyer because they're concerned about the cost. The amount that you pay depends on a variety of factors, including the following:
- The type of case: For example, there is a big difference between hiring a personal injury attorney and a bankruptcy attorney. For example, most personal injury attorneys work on a contingency basis, meaning they only receive payment if they win your case. However, with a bankruptcy attorney, you'll agree to a set fee up front.
- The arrangement you make: You shouldn't agree to work with a lawyer until you're 100 percent comfortable with the fee structure. Although you don't want to go overboard, you have the right to negotiate with your lawyer or search for legal help that's more affordable.
- The complexity of your case: Some legal cases are simple, and can be settled with nothing more than a letter or phone call from your lawyer. Conversely, there are criminal cases that are extremely complex and require many hours of work and great attention to detail. Talk to your lawyer up front about the complexity of your case and the impact on the overall cost.
While price is important, don't let this be the only factor you consider when choosing a lawyer. You should instead focus on finding someone who is reliable, experienced, knowledgeable and has a good reputation among their peers.
If you have reason to believe your lawyer violated your agreement or is charging excessive fees, discuss your concerns with them. This should clear the air, allowing you to move forward with your case.
If your lawyer doesn't agree with your assessment of what's happened, you'll want to learn more about your legal rights. You may be able to file a lawsuit for legal malpractice involving excessive fees.
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