Thursday, August 8, 2013

Find A Lawyer.

Maybe you've been told you need a lawyer for a certain situation. It seems reasonable...

Well maybe you've been unknowingly misled and DON'T even need a lawyer. 

Here are some legal questions translated into normal human English that may help. 

Maybe you're in a similar predicament to me?

I hope this carefully collated information can help you out of a troublesome situation.  

 Question 1 - What is the necessary documentation required?

find a lawyerQuestion: When you want to hire a lawyer especially personal injury lawyer what information you should look for or what questions you will ask from the lawyer? What information needs to be included in the signed documentation such as fee, etc? 

Answer: For most personal injury cases it does matter too much who you get. The case is most likely going to be settled and you will not go to court. One important area are the fees. Most lawyers charge a third and subtract costs. You can find a lawyer that will do charge 20-25% in fees but you have to look for them. The way a typical personal injury case works is you go through evaluation and treatment. After your treatment is done the attorney sends a letter to the insurance co. saying pay my client such and such amount of money. The insurance co. says no we will only pay this. Then the attorney and insurance company go back and forth and reach a final amount. Most people will take it. Pretty simple. That was a very simplified version. I assumed you have had an auto accident. The money you get is usually based on whose fault it is, the severity of injury, medical records, and the policy limits of insurance. Things to consider. How good is the attorney about getting back to you. Keep in contact to make sure attorney is aggressively going after insurance company. Things to ask attorney, ask if you medical bills will be taken out of your settlement. Also, be patient. Most clients get impatient, it takes a long time for treatment, etc., usually up to a year to settle case without trial. With trial it could be two years. But if you are too hurried you could settle for a lower amount than what you could have gotten.

Question 2 - Private Property

Question: Can an apartment complex hire a lawyer to keep you out of the office? I've recently battled with my current apartment leasing managers for being a victim of housing discrimination. I've threatened them with getting a lawyer over the matter because treatment seems to be based off of race & not everyone is being treated equally. I recently received a letter in the mail from their lawyer stating I can no longer go into the office without a 10 day letter in writing for what I may need. Its not certified and I've yet to be served with something law binding. 
Answer: It's private property and they have the right to ask you not to be there. Any business can ask you to stay out, and they can get the police to enforce that. How certain are you, and how far are you willing to take this? If there is real discrimination going on, then I'm with you. But often times people see things that aren't there. For the moment, don't go anywhere near the office. You need a lawyer. Try one of the civil rights organization. I should know the name and I can't think of it now. But there's one big one, and then there are smaller ones, usually by area, so there would be one for your city or state. If they can't help you, I think you should still get a lawyer's advice. You should be able to consult a lawyer for a few hundred.

Question 3 - Previously Scammed

lawyer speaking to judgeQuestion: I hired an immigration lawyer but Im a little hesitant about it because we were scammed by a previous lawyer. How can I know if we are making the right decision? 

Answer: No lawyer can override the law. Familiarize yourself with immigration law. You will be an informed consumer, and not easily scammed. Beware of anyone, including lawyers, who make promises they cannot keep. If something is too good to be true, it usually is. Good luck

Question 4 - No Lawyer Required!

Question: I need a lawyer to help me get a better deal on my visitation rights. I recently recieved an offer from her lawyer and i'm not really feeling it. Was wondering if anyone know about how much it cost for a descent lawyer. I live in Houston but i may need one in Dallas being she lives close to it. Any suggestions?

Answer: Negotiate it your own self. You don't need a lawyer if they are drawing up the paperwork. Texas offers "standard" guidelines for visitation with children in Texas, guidelines that work for 1,000 of families across our state and our country. The Standard Possession Order (SPO) clearly outlines visitation for "Non-Possessory Parents". It is worth knowing and understanding. Go here - it is all spelled out in black and white.

Question 5 - I can't afford a lawyer!

Question: I know I need a lawyer, but I'm poor. Lots of unfairness going on. & I need lawyers. 

Answer: If you're charged with a crime, you can get a lawyer appointed at no cost if you're indigent (poor). If your legal problems are of a different nature, try Legal Services.


Question 6 - Difference Between A Lawyer And A Solicitor

Question: What is the job of a solicitor and lawyer and what is the difference? Which is the one that works in a firm and doesn't require going to court? Thanks a lot!

Answer: My simplistic understanding is a solicitor draws up paperwork, contracts, when you buy a house etc. A lawyer will more likely help you sue people, go to court etc (although that is more a barrister in court - but the lawyer advises these things as a first step). The lines are blurred, and many professional offices have all these, and work together. You may need a licence to practice some of this in some countries. A solicitor will rarely, if ever, go to court. A lawyer will sometimes. A barrister is always in court. Again, my simplistic understanding.

Question 7 - Estate Planning (the sad stuff)

Question: Is there a website or someplace where I can search for local lawyers who specialize in estate planning? I would like to have a living trust put together but don't know where to start! How do I know I've found a reputable and honest lawyer? " - by " Rez
Answer: lets you indicate the general area of your legal issue and your location, by city or zipcode, then produces a list of attorneys. There is also an option to submit your legal issue and location plus contact information, and any attorney interested in the case will get in touch with you. There is no guarantee any will be interested, of course. is also a site for finding attorneys where you are located who handle your type of case. It purportedly rates the attorneys, too. However, within the legal community the ratings are considered more an indicator of hourly fee than of competence. The real expensive lawyer is not necessarily any better than another on something that's routine, as your living trust is. Any attorney who has been rated at all, even not very highly, should represent you well. Those who are unrated may lack experience.

Question 8 - Conflict Of Interest?

Question: My husband had a worker's comp lawyer that refused to fight for my husband rights because he knew the other parties lawyer and didn't want to "play hardball" with her. How can we report him to the Bar? 

Answer: He probably didn't do anything wrong. You can report him if you want, but you're probably just misunderstanding the situation. Didn't you ever hear the phrase, "you catch more flies with honey than vinegar"? Why would it be in your best interest for your lawyer to be a jerk to the other lawyer?

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