No matter what case your issue is in, whether that is for family law, property law, financial law or any field that needs to be handled by legal professionals, a client has a right to engage a solicitor and cross-examine them for their credentials during the first consultation.
That first consultation can be a means for a lawyer to entice more clients, but it should not be viewed as a luxury or a favour on the part of the professional to the individual. This is a key moment where a client can grill the lawyer for vital details that will inform them about their potential relationship moving forward.
In order not to waste their opportunity discussing trivial matters that are not prevalent to the case, it is worthwhile identifying some critical points to ask when sitting down with the lawyer.
Not all of these questions could receive adequate answers but if that is the case, it is worth knowing early on in the piece before investing a great deal of trust in their services.
“What Is Your Assessment Of My Situation?”
This is a great initial question to ask in the first consultation. Having handed over the details of your unique situation, you should score an initial gauge as to their understanding of the facts. Whether the reception is a positive or negative one from the view of the lawyer, this will be a good indication as to how you should proceed.
“What Options Are On The Table?”
From settling a case early to suing or proceeding with alternative measures, there should be a number of pathways that you can opt for as a client. Defendants or prosecutors will carry different degrees of expertise, but they should be well placed to issue the options and offer their recommendation based on likely outcomes.
“How Experienced Are You in Similar Cases?”
This is a vital point to know. It is one thing having experience in certain cases but if there are unique qualities that make your case different to others that would have been practiced before, then there should be grounds to proceed with confidence. If that cannot be met, then perhaps an alternative solution needs to be found. This question should also pertain to their winning track record.
“How Much Do You Charge?”
The final question is quite obvious. You need to understand what are their billing processes like and how much you are likely to invest if you continue with legal action beyond the first consultation.