Here comes another post from our friends in England, this one about Lawyer Locator Services:
Anyone can look up international law firms on the internet, or check a lawyer locator service. But a name and phone number (or email address) is not enough information on which to base a professional relationship. Lawyers everywhere tend to specialise in different areas of the law, and of course there are many different levels of skills and experience.
People need to know as much as possible in advance about the lawyer or the law firm they’re hiring. That person could have life changing consequences in the case of many civil suits. The information a potential client needs to know includes whether a lawyer has a specialist designation, how often he or she settles out of court, how many trials have been won, how many similar cases he or she has litigated.
Lawyers offer different payment plans depending on how long and complicated a case is expected to be. Depending on the case there are matters of hourly fees, fees for the entire case, or contingency fees. These can be tough questions to answer during an initial phone call, but it is a matter that should be addressed sooner rather than later for the sake of both the lawyer and client.
Using a lawyer location service or a lawyer referral service is only the first step when potential clients need legal help. To make the best decision, they need to know more about any lawyer they consider hiring. Many law practices have websites that answer several important questions up front: whether they specialize in criminal or civil matters, the level of experience represented at the firm, and what the next step is if the potential client is interested. For international law firms and cases of international scope in particular, the ability to compare, validate and conduct research in one place will save a lot of time.
Those seeking legal help may want the names of references. A good law firm or a successful lawyer will always have some satisfied former clients who readily agree to be their references and do not mind giving information to new potential clients. The information in even the best referral service or directory is only enough for a first step of narrowing down the list of lawyers who may be able to help. It is better for the client’s satisfaction, if the decision they make is a fully informed one.
At Martindale-Hubbell.co.uk, a lawyer locator service, we continuously try to provide useful information for international law firms. Contact us today at +44 (0)20 7347 3700 or firstname.lastname@example.org to get listed with us.