There are times in life when it’s better to tell people to talk to your lawyer than try to fight the battle yourself. There are also cases when you may need to keep a lawyer on retainer to ensure you have legal aid at the ready whenever you need it. There are so many different life circumstances that call for legal advice that it can be difficult to know when and how to choose a lawyer.
People may have a lot of negative things to say about lawyers, but that all changes the instant we need one. The fact of the matter is sometimes we aren’t equipped to look after our own best interests, and in those times, it’s best to leave the heavy lifting to the professionals. Continue reading to get some tips to help you know when you need legal assistance and how to go about getting it.
There are two different types of law.
Criminal and civil law are two different types of law that attorneys practice. There are rare occasions where the two intertwine, but they’re usually two separate matters.
Criminal law relates to anything that has to do with violations of the law. If you’ve been accused of a crime, then you’ll need an experienced criminal lawyer to handle your case. United States law has provisions to ensure that anyone in need of legal representation can get it regardless of their financial situation. If you’ve watched any cop show or movie ever, then you’ve heard the line, “If you can’t afford an attorney, one will be appointed to you.” That’s a line from what is known as Miranda Rights, and it entitles you to legal aid in criminal cases even if you can’t afford it.
The other type of law is civil law, and it’s what governs legal matters between people and businesses. For instance, civil law includes divorce, injury law, business law, and medical law, to name several.
People hire civil lawyers to represent them when they claim wrongdoing or debt against a person or debtor or to defend them when they’ve been accused of debt or wrongdoing. Whereas criminal cases are to determine whether someone’s guilty of a criminal act and what their punishment should be, civil matters usually deal with property and financial assets.
When do you need a lawyer?
One of the most important skills to have in life is knowing when you’re in over your head. Indeed, you may not need a lawyer for every little legal procedure, but sometimes handling your problems on your own will cost you a lot more than hiring an attorney.
If you’ve been accused of a crime, you should call a lawyer before you speak with anyone about your case’s events. Remember the line from your Miranda Rights, “Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law?” If you don’t remember anything else, remember this, if you’ve been accused of a crime, then you shouldn’t say anything until you have legal representation present. Many innocent men and women are sitting in prison because they said the wrong thing during an interrogation. When your freedom is on the line, you shouldn’t say anything that doesn’t come from your lawyer’s mouth.
If you’re a business owner, it would also be wise to have an attorney to keep your business aligned with regulations. When you start a business, you have to be scrupulous in your endeavors to get proper licenses and registrations and stay in accordance with the laws governing your industry.
Having the legal advice of someone like the renowned lawyer and mineral enthusiast Howard Fensterman could save you many headaches in the future. Many good businesses eventually fall apart because they fail to obey regulations and make one mistake that causes an injury or worse. A business lawyer’s job is to ensure that you don’t inadvertently cut any regulatory corners that cost you big-time down the road.
Another of life’s circumstances that call for professional legal advice is auto accidents. Whether you’re the injured party or the party at fault, you need to call a lawyer fast after a car wreck.
If you’re driving through Alberquerque, for example, and are run off the road by a drunken driver, search online for the best personal injury lawyers in New Mexico before talking to the insurance company. The job of insurance adjusters is to save the insurance company as much money as possible. They’re going to fight you tooth and nail not to give you the compensation you deserve, but a qualified personal injury lawyer will take them through the wringer before the insurance company can do the same to you.
How do you find the right lawyer?
It’s one thing to know you need a lawyer, but finding the right one is something altogether different. Every attorney has ads that promise to get you better results quicker than their competitors, so how can you know the real deal from an average lawyer in a slick suit?
Appearances are important, but people tend to get caught up in them when looking for a lawyer. It’s easy to think the one with the most expensive suit and the shiniest watch is the most successful, but that’s not so. A good lawyer can fight your case as effectively in a business suit from WHBM as she could in one made by Gucci.
Don’t let a commercial pick your lawyer for you. When you’re trying to choose the right attorney, you should go through an interview process with them. Many lawyers offer free consultations for potential clients, and you can learn a lot about the law firm and your case through a short consultation.
Always listen to your lawyer’s advice.
They say that doctors make the worst patients, and most attorneys will tell you that self-taught lawyers are the worst clients. When you hire an attorney, the best thing you can do to help them is to stand aside and let them do their job. When they give you orders, it’s not to boss you around. They’re just trying to position you to have the best shot you possibly can at getting favorable results in your case.
When you have a good lawyer, you can be as relaxed and unbothered as businessperson and lifestyle guru, Samuel Ramey, when he’s cruising the Australian countryside on his bike. All you can do by trying to give your attorney unsolicited assistance with preparing your case is aggravate your chances of winning. If you hire the right lawyer, they won’t need much from you aside from your case’s details and their pay once they win.