Over $100 billion are spent on legal fees annually in the US alone. While many of those fees are paid to lawyers who genuinely do their work and serve their clients ethically, some lawyers may not have such a strong moral code. Many people face a dilemma when trying to determine whether they should argue with their lawyers about their fees. In this article, we’ll be giving you four reasons to avoid holding back expenses with attorneys.
1. Lack of Consideration
It may sound counterintuitive because you hire a lawyer to provide you with legal advice, but not being able to chime in and have your attorney listen to you is a pretty bad sign. You don’t want a lawyer who doesn’t hear your wishes and pressure you into doing something you don’t want instead of thinking aloud with you to find a compromise or a resolution. This problem can go south in cases where the stakes are high, such as high-profile settlements and criminal cases.
Even though a good lawyer knows the legal framework much better than you, they should never pressure you into something because the final decision is always yours. If the lawyer believes that you are wrong, they should properly explain their reasons for thinking so. Not holding back on the expenses will ensure that you are not getting a lawyer who is only interested in getting the case over with by any means necessary.
2. Lack of Experience
The most critical mistake a client can make is choosing to go with a less experienced lawyer just because their fees are lower. Even though there are some brilliant lawyers who are still launching their careers, you shouldn’t expect every lawyer with a low fee to be a law genius. This industry is built upon trust, reputation, and experience. You can’t have any of those if you don’t have enough experience. Lawyers with high fees have worked many years to set a fee high enough to match their level of experience and reputation.
The amount of time required to be a fully certified lawyer is far from being low. Still, there are certain areas of the law that a case might tread into that an inexperienced lawyer may not be able to follow properly. For example, a case may branch out from a simple personal injury case into a full-on battle with an insurance provider. As mentioned by this car accident attorney, the lawyer’s experience can help you avoid over-billing strategies and other gray tactics used by insurance providers. The lawyer you go with should carefully research the case to determine if their legal versatility in different sectors of the law will be formidable enough to handle the case.
3. Lack of Preparation
You wouldn’t believe how often a case can go into complete disarray and chaos because the lawyer didn’t take their time researching and preparing for the case. You will rarely find this problem with dedicated lawyers who have reasonable or above-average fees, especially those who handle very serious cases related to criminal law.
Even if their time is money, you are the one paying, so you should expect undivided attention to your case until it is thoroughly prepared and organized by the lawyer. Any question you ask your lawyer should be easily answered if they are meticulous in doing their jobs, which is rarely the case with pro bono and lower-than-average fees. They must know how to reach each document needed to answer questions and to prepare for court.
4. Lack of Communication
This is a common problem, and it happens in other industries besides the law industry framework. Lack of communication is something that can be tolerated if the issue in question isn’t critical or time-sensitive, which is far from being the case in a legal situation. The last thing you want your lawyer to do is to ignore your calls or keep on rescheduling important meetings. Many people may get attracted to the extremely low fees that some lawyers propose. Still, they may not see where a problem may arise until they are met with an immovable wall of miscommunication or its lack, generally.
This is more common than you’d think because the volume of clients that lawyers of extremely low fees don’t make sense in terms of time management, which is why many clients are deferred to assistants and paralegals. You should always avoid taking direct legal advice regarding your case from a paralegal or assistant, but rather have them relay your message to the lawyer if they aren’t directly available.
While the law is a critical component of any modern society, it is also an industry with businesses branching out infinitely. The bad news is that fees are constantly on the rise due to inflation and other factors; it doesn’t seem like it’s going down anytime soon due to its increasing importance in everyday dealings. Getting a good and experienced attorney for a high fee is infinitely safer than settling for less just because of the low fee.