A common piece of advice for those seeking a lawyer is to get an experienced one. It's true that a lawyer's experience is a good measure of their mettle, but how exactly do you know whether your lawyer is experienced? Here are three ways you can tell whether your prospective lawyer is experienced:
How Long They Have Practiced
Many professionals get better with time, and lawyers are no exception. In fact, some people feel that a typical lawyer spends their first two years on the job just getting the hang of things. It's not just the experience of practicing law that you get from a lawyer who has been practicing for a long time. With time, lawyers also develop valuable networks with other lawyers, expert witnesses, prosecutors and other professionals who may help with your case.
A lawyer with 20 years of experience isn't necessarily better than one with 15 years of experience. However, it's reasonable to expect a lawyer with many years of experience to be better than one who has just come out of law school. Therefore, knowing how long your prospective attorney has been practicing is a good start.
The Specific Cases They Have Handled
It's not just the number of years of practice you should be concerned with; the specific cases your prospective lawyer has handled matter, too. For example, family law deals with many things, including divorce, child custody, domestic violence, surrogacy and many others. Compare the experience of a family law attorney who has been practicing for a decade, but hasn't handled a single surrogacy case with another one who has only practiced for five years, but has mainly been dealing with surrogacy issues. In this case, if you need legal counsel on surrogacy, the second lawyer is more experienced.
Lastly, you can also use peer reviews and ratings to gauge the experience of your prospective lawyer. For example, you can research your lawyers' ratings and reviews at lawyers.com, which uses the Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Ratings™ system. The system uses five main factors, one of them being legal experience, to rate lawyers. The reviews are provided by lawyers and judges, which means they come from reliable and knowledgeable persons.
After doing all these, don't forget that experience is just one of the criteria to use when hiring a lawyer. For example, most people are also interested in knowing how much their lawyers charge, the likeability of the lawyers, and how reachable the lawyers are. Visit http://www.austinlrs.com to learn more.
I am a real estate attorney, and I have been helping clients buy and sell property for many years. Some clients do not realize their legal obligations and options when it comes to purchasing or selling a house or land. I hope that this blog will be a way for people to get information about legal issues in real estate and what they need to know when doing business. Buying and selling property can be complicated, and all parties involved have legal obligations. Know what is expected of you, and you will be able to get the best out of your real estate transactions.