3. Talk to the lawyer or paralegal

You may need to call a few lawyers or paralegals before finding one that will take your case and you're comfortable with.

When you meet with a lawyer or paralegal or talk to them on the phone, remember that you're also interviewing them. They are not just getting information about you. You're deciding if you want to hire them to help you with your legal problem.

Ask about:

  • their experience in law
  • how they would handle your case
  • how the law affects your situation
  • what choices you have
  • how long they think your case will take
  • how they will charge you and what your case might cost
  • what you should do next
  • what community services you can contact for information or help

The lawyer or paralegal may not be able to answer all your questions right away. For example, they may need time to review documents.

Find out about their fees. Ask about:

  • their hourly rate
  • how much your case will likely cost
  • how often they will bill you for their services
  • what could cause the cost to increase
  • how can you lower the cost
  • if they will work with you to establish a payment plan
  • how much money you need to before they begin work on your case

Tell the lawyer or paralegal about any needs or concerns you have like:

  • for disabilities
  • finding an interpreter
  • safety concerns, for example, you've experienced domestic violence

Based on your conversation, you can decide if you want this person to be your lawyer or paralegal. Your lawyer or paralegal should be someone you can work with and .

All the conversations you have with your lawyer or paralegal, or the person you're thinking of hiring, are confidential. This means the lawyer or paralegal can't talk to anyone about what you have said without your permission.

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