How to Choose a Law Firm
For many, in our personal lives we rarely need to engage the services of a lawyer. Most of us will need a legal professional for things like buying property or help with managing our will, but businesses will generally require legal services more often, especially when leasing property, handling HR issues, development of contracts and NDAs, and so on.
Perhaps the most important factor to consider is how credible the law firms you’re looking at are. A law firm must give potential clients a sense of trust and integrity, as well as evidence of their capability. Around three quarters of those who take on a law firm research that firm’s credibility and trustworthiness before making contact.
Commercial law comprises of many specialist areas, so finding a firm with experience and expertise in the type of law that meets your requirements is important. Confirming how long a firm’s lawyers have been working in this area, and how much of this particular type of work the firm undertakes, will help guide a decision-making process in the right direction.
Once you’ve chosen a law firm and have started to work with them, you will want to be sure that you can reach them as needed. It is often the case that the time we are working with a law firm can be stressful, so it is important that your lawyer, or their team, responds to emails in a timely manner and can take a phone call without giving you the impression that your conversation is being hurried.
Cost is, of course, a factor that must be kept in mind when choosing any service provider, but using cost as the main driver in the selection process of a law firm could lead to challenges further along the road. Credibility, and expertise provided by a more expensive firm may result in lower overall costs during your relationship. In 2019 LawNet published the results of an extensive piece of research which looked at how people choose a lawyer. The results show that almost 70% of people make their decision based on reputation, while only 6% named cost as the major determining factor.
While selecting a law firm can certainly seem like a risky undertaking, performing some basic “due diligence” beforehand, such as talking to business contacts for recommendations, finding a good fit could lead to the formation of a long-term relationship which will deliver benefits over time.
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