Tips for Finding a Law Firm You Can Trust
Trust forms the bedrock of every lawyer-client relationship. Specifically, a client must trust that his or her attorney will
- Work hard to represent them,
- Use good judgment,
- Carry out their wishes,
- Keep information in confidence,
- Charge a reasonable fee,
- Protect funds placed under the lawyer’s control,
- Provide updates on the case, and
- Not discriminate.
These are so important that the Supreme Court of Ohio lists each as an essential duty a lawyer owes to his or her client. Knowing that you can rely on the person you hire to offer legal advice and represent you in legal proceedings provides peace of mind and gives you faith in achieving a favorable outcome.
Three things that you can do to find a lawyer you can trust are to seek out quality referrals, check for ethical or professional problems, and conduct interviews before hiring. Above all, never forget that your lawyer works for you. When an attorney betrays your trust in any way, it is your right — and a duty you owe to your own self — to fire that person and find a new attorney. 10 things you need to know about workers’ compensation
Lawyers in Ohio must maintain a license issued by the Ohio State Bar Association and practice according to rules and standards set by the Ohio Supreme Court. The state’s highest court also maintains a regularly updated list of organizations that offer high-quality referrals for professional, ethical, and fully credentialed attorneys. Consulting that source when first starting to search Ohio attorneys is a great way to identify members of Columbus law firms you could end up trusting.
Discovering Red Flags
In addition to searching referral databases for attorneys who have offices within driving distance and who specialize in helping clients with legal problems like yours, check the Ohio Supreme Court’s online records of lawyers who have been disciplined for violating clients’ trust or failing to live up to some other professional obligation. That information can be searched at http://www.supremecourt.ohio.gov/AttySvcs/officeAttySvcs.
Acting Like an Employer
After making a preliminary list of lawyers you think could be trusted to handle your case, start acting like an employer. Conduct a kind of background check by visiting each attorney’s law firm website. Read the lawyers’ professional bios, check out testimonials from former clients, and review case results. You might also want to look up your potential lawyers on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube. You aren’t looking for a friend, but you will find it easier to trust an attorney who comes across as approachable and knowledgeable on social media.
The final step is to interview your lawyer. Questions to ask include:
- How many years have you been in practice as a lawyer?
- How would you handle a case like mine?
- Have you handled many cases like mine? If so, what happened for your clients?
- Would I work just with you, or would other lawyers help with my case?
- What is the cost associated with hiring you, and how will payments be accepted?
If you need a Columbus, Ohio law firm you can trust to help you with a workers’ compensation, Social Security disability, personal injury, medical malpractice, or public retirement system lawsuit, contact Agee Clymer Mitchell & Portman. Schedule a free consultation by calling (614) 221-3318 or using this online contact form.