Hiring an Attorney

When a legal challenge arises, the right attorney can make all the difference. You can find one by asking friends for referrals, consulting print and online directories or contacting the state bar association.

When meeting an attorney for the first time, be sure to understand how they charge for their services. Some lawyers work on a contingency fee basis, while others charge hourly rates.


If you’re experiencing a legal issue, it can be difficult to figure out what steps to take. An attorney can help navigate the legal process and provide reassurance that your best interests are being served. They have the education and experience to ensure that your case runs smoothly, while avoiding any unnecessary fees or complications.

A lawyer with years of experience has handled many cases similar to yours and is likely better equipped to offer solutions that will lead to a successful resolution. Also, they may be able to catch issues early and prevent them from worsening over time.

Ask about the attorney’s experience in your particular situation during your consultation. You can also ask for references or request case studies to determine if they are familiar with your issue and whether their knowledge will benefit you. If they seem to have little experience, consider looking elsewhere. The most important thing is to find a lawyer who inspires confidence and a good working relationship.


Reputation is the overall perception others have of you, whether it’s a positive or negative perception. People who have a good reputation are considered reliable and trustworthy, and those with a bad reputation are seen as unreliable and untrustworthy.

Choosing the right lawyer for your case is important, so be sure to check that they are licensed and in good standing with the New York State Office of Court Administration. It is also important to choose a lawyer who has a good reputation among their peers and clients.

You can find out more about an attorney’s reputation by getting recommendations from friends and family, or searching online or in directories like Martindale Hubbell and the local law library. It is also helpful to ask lawyers how many cases they have handled that are similar to yours. Lastly, pay attention to how you feel during your first meeting and in conversations with them over the phone or email.


Whether you need help filing a lawsuit, setting up a trust fund, or cleaning up debts, it’s important to understand what the cost will be upfront. Attorneys use a variety of billing structures to fit different client budgets. Make sure you ask how your attorney will bill you and get all fee agreements in writing.

Hourly rates are the most common fee arrangement for attorneys in virtually every field of law. Hourly rates are typically charged in six-minute increments and may include a partner’s hourly rate, junior attorneys’ rate, paralegal fees, and other administrative costs.

Some attorneys charge flat fees for routine legal work like creating a will or resolving a traffic ticket. A flat fee may also include mandatory costs, such as court report and space rental fees for depositions. Attorneys can also charge advance fees, called a retainer, to help cover potential costs before beginning work on a case. Ask your prospective lawyer how they handle a retainer and review any bills you receive to be clear on how the money is being spent.


When hiring an attorney, look for someone who communicates clearly. This is especially important when dealing with complicated legal matters. You want a lawyer who will explain legal concepts in a way that makes sense to you and who will listen to you without interrupting or talking over you. Good communication skills will help ensure that all parties are on the same page regarding case details and deadlines.

The lawyer’s communication style is also important when it comes to billing and expenses. If you are not comfortable with how they communicate payment milestones and bills, it is best to find a different lawyer.

Asking friends and family members about their experiences with attorneys can be a good way to get started in finding the right one for you. However, you should also use your common sense and gut instincts when choosing an attorney. Your relationship with your lawyer may last several years, so you need to find someone who inspires confidence and trust.