Choosing the Right Attorney for Your Case
No one wants to be in a situation where finding an attorney is necessary. Whether you’ve been fired from your job illegally, been a victim of sexual harassment, been hit by a car or bitten by the neighbor’s dog or any other incident in which you’re a victim, litigation isn’t to be entered into lightly.
The fact is, though, extraordinary things do happen to ordinary people. Unfortunately, people find themselves in hostile work environments, retaliated against for being a whistleblower, or in physical, emotional or economic distress because of situations that were forced upon them. When these things happen, wise legal advice and strong representation can make the difference between unnecessary suffering and rightful compensation for damages incurred.
Not Every “Top Law Firm” Is the Best for Your Situation
Many situations require specific kinds of lawyers. You wouldn’t hire an employment attorney to represent you in a divorce hearing or a personal injury lawyer for a patent dispute. Hiring one of the top law firms in San Diego may not be appropriate if their services don’t fit your specific needs.
Finding a Good Attorney in San Diego
The question then becomes: how does the average person find the right lawyer for them and their case? How exactly do you find the best San Diego lawyer for your case?
It’s rare to go a day without seeing a commercial on television or hearing an ad on the radio with a lawyer claiming to be “on your side” with loads of success and experience in their area of expertise.
Obviously, an advertisement isn’t enough to determine if that’s the right lawyer for you. Many ads make the same kinds of claims. A good lawyer should not only offer strategic advice on complex legal issues but also provide an empathetic ear to listen to your particular situation. After all, if you need a lawyer, chances are you’re stressed. Part coach, part educator, a good lawyer can become a protector and defender of your rights as your legal counsel.
Many attorneys offer an initial consultation free of charge. Take advantage of this. Use that meeting and good old-fashioned intuition to determine if the attorney is honest and forthcoming. Here are some things to look for when you meet face-to-face:
- Do you trust that the attorney will fight aggressively for you?
- Does the lawyer believe your story?
- Does the attorney seem distracted or busy, or do they have your undivided attention? A lawyer who is too busy to focus on you during the assessment of your claim may not pay attention to your case when you leave their office.
- Is the lawyer looking you in the eye when speaking with you?
- Are you getting believable advice? Or are they promising you the sky to get the case?
- What’s the lawyer’s track record for your type of claim?
- Do you feel the lawyer respects you and is talking to you in a way that makes sense to you (not using a bunch of confusing legalese)?
Ask what kind of cases he or she has litigated in the past, and ask about your case’s chance of success or failure. There are downsides and risks to almost every case. If they’re giving you answers that seem too good to be true, you’re probably right. An honest and competent lawyer won’t waste your time or theirs on a case that really doesn’t really have a chance of success.