What to Avoid When Hiring an Attorney in Ohio
Thousands of attorneys practice in Columbus, Ohio, and surrounding Franklin County. Making the wrong choice for you, your family, and your case is probably easier than finding the right lawyer who can deliver the best outcome while treating you with respect.
The internet runs over with advice on how to choose a “best” lawyer, but how can you know which Columbus-area attorneys to avoid? No set list of rules exists, but the legal team at Agee Clymer Mitchell &Portman can offer three general guidelines.
Avoid law firms that guarantee results.
Ethical attorneys do not promise anything more than doing everything possible on behalf the people they represent. We take many Social Security disability, personal injury, and wrongful death cases. While we have strong track records for securing disability benefits and insurance settlements that benefit the individuals who come to us with significant financial needs, we would only hurt them even more if we promised results we could not deliver. No lawyer wins every case. And winning rarely means getting absolutely everything sought. Never hire a Columbus attorney who tells you otherwise.
Avoid attorneys who strike you as unprofessional or inexperienced.
An excellent piece of advice common to all those find-a-lawyer guides is to meet with the attorneys you are thinking about hiring and conducting what amount to job interviews. Your lawyer will work for you, so it makes eminent sense to approach the first meeting as if you will be the boss.
While you probably are not an attorney, you should be able to tell when answers about their legal experience, proposed strategies, and what laws apply to your problem make sense. Walk away if you spot red flags like misuse of terms even you know from TV and movies, consistently vague answers, or, again, excessive assurances that you will win your case easily.
Trust your first impressions, too. A $10,000 suit does not make a good lawyer, but high-quality attorneys rarely have dirty offices; cluttered is fine, but not mold in the corners. And while you do not have to like your lawyer as a friend, you absolutely must trust him or her and be able to work closely with them without experiencing too much tension. Look elsewhere if you get a bad vibe from a central Ohio attorney who has an impressive resume but rubs you the wrong way.
Avoid any lawyer who tells you have no other options.
An important aspect of the right to hire an attorney to advise and represent you is that you have the right to fire an attorney who gives you bad advice or inadequate representation. You can change lawyers at any time, so never feel obligated to stick with an attorney who ignores your calls, refuses to respond to emails, constantly reschedules meetings, or does not follow your instructions. Also feel free to seek second opinions on whatever your Columbus attorney tells you about accepting a settlement, dropping an appeal, or pursuing a particular legal strategy.
As disability and personal injury attorneys in Columbus Ohio, the legal team at Agee Clymer Mitchell & Portman offer free consultations on Social Security, workers’ compensation, medical malpractice, car crash, insurance, intentional tort, and public sector employee retirement plan cases. Let us know if we can help you by calling (614) 678-3318 or arranging an appointment online by filling in this contact form.