What You Need To Know Before Hiring A Solicitor
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Published by TOP4 Team
The law can work for you or against you. It’s smart to always make sure you get the former and not the latter. And aside from being a law abiding citizen, one other way to get the law to work for you would be to hire a solicitor — before you ever need one.
Solicitors offer a wide range of legal support and advice. These legal experts will work on criminal litigation, personal injury claims, wills and probate, landlord and tenant agreements, mergers and acquisitions, buying and selling property, business- related disputes, and other matters of the law.
It’s always best to have one before you ever need one because once a legal issue comes up in your business or you somehow get in trouble with the law, you will not have to deal with the stress of finding the right solicitor. And whatever legal problems you are dealing with will be handled immediately.
Note that most solicitors will specialise in one area of the law; hiring a solicitor that focuses on certain cases similar to yours would be ideal since you will be assured of expertise and experience on the subject.
Qualifications to Practice
Solicitors are expected to maintain integrity at all times. To enforce this expectation, the appropriate regulating authority has issued a set of rules, which has basically guides solicitors to behave in an ethical manner. Regulating authorities will issue certificates to qualified solicitors, which means your practising solicitor should hold one — and proudly display it in his office so look for that practicing certificate.
Further qualification may be necessary for solicitors who practise certain legal subjects. This could include membership to a quality assurance accreditation scheme, which certify your solicitor’s expert knowledge and skills in a particular area of the law.
What do solicitors charge? It will vary with different solicitors according to their expertise and experience; but you will be charged by the hour. It is crucial that you ask about fees on the first consultation, and then, consider what sort of estimate cost you might have to spend.
When you’re in a financial bind, you may be eligible for legal aid. Other solicitors can also work on conditional fee, which is the usual practise in personal injury claims. The “no win no fee” arrangement allows clients to not pay for solicitor fees when the case is won. If the other side wins though, you may have to pay for their legal costs. Clarify this one issue with your solicitor before signing on to a “no win no fee” arrangement.
Working with Your Solicitor
Of course, choosing a solicitor based on the rate alone might not be such a smart move. You may have found an affordable solicitor to work on your case but if you were not comfortable around him or her, or if consultations are always rushed and communication is rare, then you may be paying more than you think.
The best way to gauge a good solicitor would be to arrange an initial meeting. Consider the ease in which you’re able to get in touch with the solicitor’s office. Is the location convenient for you? Determine the solicitor’s sympathy for your situation, especially when it concerns a personal matter, e.g., divorce or business dispute with a family member.
Legal problems are never easy and sometimes unavoidable. By hiring the right solicitor to fight on your side, you’ll be able to resolve the matter as favourably and quickly as possible.