Every now and then, there are some reports in the newspaper about the exorbitant fees that lawyers charge and how clients are made to shell out money just to satisfy a so-called greedy lawyer. However, knowing how to hire a good lawyer can ensure that you save money on the legal fees.
There are some lawyers that have no problem giving the first appointment free of cost. When making an appointment with a lawyer for the first time, this is something you should ask. Usually it is not fair to charge a client for the initial consultation, but there are some lawyers who may charge a minimal amount. Never hire a lawyer who expects you to pay the full rate for the first appointment.
Before hiring the lawyer, make sure you completely understand the fee structure of the law firm. Make sure you know what and how you are going to be charge. This way you will not be in for a surprise when you are presented with the bill. Also, inquire about hidden costs and the billing procedure. In addition, for the fee that you are going to be paying, you should know the breakdown and how often you will have access to your lawyer. In case you are on a budget, it does not harm to find out whether the lawyer will be willing to work on a fixed rate rather than an hourly rate.
As mentioned earlier, many law firms end up having hidden charges for things like stamp duty, searches and even bank charges. Make sure you find out all these charges before hiring the lawyer.
Check with the lawyer whether there is any way the charges can be reduced. Sometimes, there are some tasks that you can do yourself without using the law firm. This will bring down the legal fees to a certain extent.
When you hire a lawyer, you would have to sign a contract or a legal document. This will give the details on the fees that would be payable to the lawyer. However, you should not sign any document without completely understanding the fee structure and payment options.
Even after a lawyer has quoted his fee, try to negotiate. If you find the fee too high or need time to pay it, make sure you negotiate it. The legal market is extremely competitive and most lawyers will be willing to compromise to a certain extent. However, do not let the cost be the determining factor when it comes to choosing a lawyer.