The first time you meet with a lawyer would most likely be for a consultation to discuss your situation and to enquire about his or her fees, qualifications, and experience. While a consultation might seem easy and straightforward enough, it can be an intimidating prospect for some people. Many people often do not know what to expect and feel anxious at the thought of meeting a lawyer. So the following information provides some pointers that you might want to consider before you meet with a law firm in Cairns.
Make a list of questions
Before any consultation, set aside some time to think about the questions that you would like to ask your lawyer. This might seem unnecessary but often people forget to ask important questions when they are put on the spot. It is a good idea to write a list of questions that you are most concerned about; for example, questions such as what kind of strategy would you recommend? What are your rates? What is the best way to communicate with you? Preparing a list of questions will allow you to strategically cover your queries and concerns as well as efficiently use the time spent in the consultation.
Gather and prepare paperwork
If you are asked to provide paperwork or documents before the initial consultation, make sure that you provide these to the lawyer well in advance of the consultation and make extra copies for your personal records. This will help your lawyer be more prepared with your case when you meet with him or her. The following are examples of some of the documents that you may be asked to provide:
- Financial statements
- Court documents
- Medical records
- Police record
- Witness statements
Know your facts
Upon meeting, your lawyer will ask you to describe the key facts of your case. Given that the consultation time will be limited, having a firm grasp of the key facts will help you communicate the real issues to your lawyers and make best use of the available time. Some of the details that you should include in your narrative are the key dates, names, events, and the status of your case. Your lawyer would also be assisted if you can provide a written summary of your case, detailing what you consider to be the important matters of which you want the lawyer to be aware.
It can be difficult to remember everything that you have discussed with your lawyer. Therefore, it is a good idea to jot down a few notes on the important points during your consultation so that you can refer to them easily, especially if you need to submit additional documents or if your lawyer has instructions for you.
Think about your objectives
Knowing your objectives will clearly inform your lawyer of your exact requirements and goals. Some questions worth having a think over are what do you want your lawyer to accomplish for you? For example, are you looking to draft a new will, review a legal documentor even to respond to a claim against you? Think about your goals carefully.
You might feel reluctant to disclose certain details or be tempted to gloss over some things, but in order to get the best possible outcome, you need to be honest and frank with your lawyer. Remember that your lawyer is there to represent and act for you, not to judge you.
Meeting a lawyer for the first time may be a new experience but it should not make you feel uncomfortable. By following these tips, you should be able to make the most of your consultation, gain an understanding of the issues involved in your case, and be able to decide if your lawyer is a good fit for you.
If you require legal advice, contact Marino Lawyers today. Marino Lawyers have offices located in Cairns, Edmonton and Port Douglas with visiting offices at Gordonvale and Babinda. As an established Cairns law firm with over 30 years experience, Marino Lawyers have the expertise and experience to assist you with your legal matter while ensuring that you are supported throughout the process.