When to Call a Lawyer vs. a Mediator »
As in a court case, the process of mediation provides a method of conflict resolution. However, it is much more informal and does …
As in a court case, the process of mediation provides a method of conflict resolution. However, it is much more informal and does …
A personal injury lawyer can help defendants in a variety of situations, from car accidents to defamation. Learn what personal inj…
Divorce lawyers help couples agree to the terms of their separation, but can also be very expensive. Learn how to choose the right…
Mr Morrison and his staff are very caring and competent and I look forward to referring my clients to them. R B Anderson
My name is Lisa Williams. My husband and I have had a horrible year and had to do something we thought we would never have to do filing Bk. When you have been married 34 years and never had to ask for any help from anyone its really hard when your faced with what we were faced with. So i called Jeff Field's office regarding filing Bk. Its been little harder filing because we own a business and was not including it in the BK. I had the pleasure of working with Chris Sleeper an attorney for Jeff Fields. I honestly don't know how i would have got thru this without him. He knew how upset I was anyway having to do this. But he always had my back and when i would call him so stressed i didn't know what to do, he would always make it so much better. everything that he told me would happen did. He made everything so much better for us. He has worked so hard on our case and got it done. Chris we could never thank you enough for what you have done for us you are one in a million in our eyes.
Worst lawyer EVER!!! No one at this firm is respectful of your time or what is going on with your case. My personal injury case is STILL unresolved 1 year later. This is something that should've taken just a few months to settle. They never return your calls and don't try to get the best settlement they can from the insurance company. Please do yourself a favor and save a huge headache and continue your search for another lawyer, this one will not give you what you need. If I could give them less than 1 star I would.
Great job again by the team at Atlanta Property Experts! Sold our home in less than a week! They are the ultimate professionals and understand the needs of their clients.
Dana is one of the most professional Personal Injury attorneys anywhere. I have know him a long time, and he is very well-respected here in the Marietta Ga community by clients, attorneys and judges alike. Recently (September 2016) I was hit by car that ran a red light, and my legs were crushed. Dana worked closely with me to get all my bills paid and to get an appropriate settlement. You cannot do better!Rick Dawsey
Great attorney. This is the second time I have used this attorney and Jeff Bunch did a really good job. My highest recommendation for anyone needing a trial attorney.
I'm giving BJ Abbott 5 stars because he represented my ex-wife and his incompetence won me the case! He uses legal terms such as "big whoop" in court, which should tell you all you need to know. He drug the case out for over 4 years, I'm sure charging my ex handsomely and in the end, couldn't even close the deal. He was so good at his job, that my ex ended up having to pay a portion of my legal fees!! Thanks BJ!!!!!
I called today to see why I was being sued. I got served with papers on Saturday, first thing Monday I called to see what this was about. The receptionist was extremely rude and was breathing heavily after I told her that I am not willing to give her my social over the phone. With udder arrogance she proceed transferring me to the next person who ended up being even more rude. With a condescending voice and attitude he continued to talk over me and interrupted every question I had. I have only dealt with few unpleasant Over the top rude people like this. After all, I don't personally owe YOU money, do I? At the very least help me understand what this is about and stop talking to me like I'm a petty thief. Tim, Tom, whatever your name may be-I hope you can get over whatever is making you act this way. But until these people fear loosing their job, not much will change. And Carmen, get a better team!
Karen,I think we've spoken to the same guy. Every time I call I get him. His name is Tim. I've had several bad experiences with him. I was served papers for a judgement on a medical bill that I didn't even know I had from years ago! I never got anything in the mail, a phone call or anything.Tim is extremely rude and snappy. On my most recent call which was about a check of mine they cashed but applied to someone else's account, Tim asked initially asked for my birth date. 11/22. His response was "Ouch! That's JFK's death date!" I could go on but it's a waste of time. Completely unprofessional. They act like I'm trying to get one over on them. I am paying what I owe every month just as we agreed and I still catch hell. The least they could do is display a little courtesy.If I could give 0 stars I would.
He basically showed up to court, late... and when we went in front of the judge he did the minimal amount of speaking and did not advise me on options at all. He was Very quick to take the payment to the bank and cashed it...m but when we wanted him to represent me (he insisted we pay up-front and immediately before he would look at my file. So payment was sent, and promptly cashed in under 4 days time) and he stopped returning phone calls and certified letters requesting status uodates or any information regarding my drivers license status etc. He ignored certified mail requesting a refund for the 2nd payment and copies of all important documents required to go to the DMV...That was all back in November 2008... he has yet to follow through with anything and other than being able to view his signature on the 2nd check, he still is avoiding me, my whole family and has left a bad taste for him and hes a perfect example of why people say lawyers are sleazy and liars....
The legal profession is vast, with each attorney having his or her specialties. Here are some of the most common attorneys individuals seek out when they require legal aid:
A criminal defense lawyer is probably the attorney the average person imagines. Criminal attorneys are the men and women who defend individuals accused of a crime. The lawyer may work pro bono - for the public good - so the accused is certain to have representation, even if he or she cannot afford an attorney.
Criminal lawyers are experts in the criminal justice system. They help their clients decide how to plead when first charged by the police and guide them through trial procedures. Defense lawyers must use every bit of their knowledge and resources to get their clients the fairest results from criminal proceedings.
If you are a small business owner or the head of a larger corporation, you may come into contact with a business lawyer. Many big companies keep a legal staff on payroll to deal with the daily operations of running and maintaining a large enterprise. Business lawyers may have more specific specialties like copyright law, product liability and mergers and acquisitions.
Business attorneys may focus their practices on certain industries. There are entertainment lawyers to guide artists through royalties and media contracts, while hospitals employ malpractice attorneys to protect doctors from aggressive litigation.
When you work for a company, you may find yourself in need of an employment lawyer - especially if the relationship between you and your employer sours. An employment attorney prevents people from losing their jobs due to unfair reasons. Workers' compensation lawyers help maintain safe employment conditions and ensure workers receive fair compensation after workplace injury or discrimination.
A personal finance attorney can protect and manage your investments and securities. You may use a finance lawyer to help you prepare your taxes, but you might be better off working with an accountant. A tax attorney is more commonly contacted after a business or individual runs into trouble with the IRS or state regulators.
Real Estate Lawyer
Your family may keep a lawyer on retainer to guide you through the major expenses that come up in life. When buying a home, you could work with a real estate lawyer to make sure you get the best deal and won't get taken advantage of by tricky mortgage agreements or unfair landlords. An estate attorney can help you plan for the worst by creating a will and preparing your finances for after your death.
A bankruptcy lawyer is essential to help you resolve your financial difficulties when they start to spin out of control. Certain attorneys help create strategies to bring you out of debt and speak to your creditors. A lawyer can advise you on which type of bankruptcy you should file for.
If you are suing someone or being sued, you need a civil lawyer. Civil attorneys - and criminal lawyers - are the legal representatives who argue on your behalf in a courtroom setting. Civil lawyers may represent you on matters of business, finance or a wide variety of other specialized needs.
One of the most common types of civil attorneys is a personal injury lawyer. When you're hurt by an outside party and you would like to hold them legally responsible, a personal injury attorney conducts litigation and negotiates settlements to compensate for your pain and suffering. Sometimes many wronged people will join together with a single civil lawyer or law office to form a class action lawsuit.
Most people will turn to a lawyer during a divorce to navigate the emotionally charged legal proceedings. A divorce attorney can assist in determining grounds for separation, division of property and custody of children.
Family attorneys deal with much more personal matters. If you're getting married, a family lawyer can help you prepare a prenuptial agreement or other family planning paperwork such as adoption or inheritance documents.
To ensure you find a competent attorney who won't abuse your trust or drain your finances, you have to make the proper inquiries. There are several questions you should ask, but the majority will fall under three general topics:
Training and Experience Questions
One of the best ways to determine quality is to examine an attorney's history. When you first step into a lawyer's office, you should check for the appropriate certifications and diplomas. You have to ask how long he or she has practiced law and request information that demonstrates the practice's success. Look for precise details such as percentage of cases settled out of court.
Once you inquire about the broad details of their legal career, you should ask questions about their experience that pertains to your specific issue. You should ask how many similar cases they have handled and if they have special skills or training that applies specifically to your needs. Lawyers can't mention clients by name, but you should ask for basic details about identical past cases.
You need to ask about every possible fee that will come up when working with an attorney. You should request a list of all costs in advance so you won't be surprised by additional expenses like overhead. Also determine exactly when you will start being billed. You want to inspect paperwork carefully. If the attorney charges you for his or her experience, you need to make sure he or she will perform tasks personally and not hand it off to an assistant.
Find out if the attorney has a flat fee or charges by the hour. Many civil lawyers work on contingency. Whatever the payment plan, make inquiries about how the lawyer plans to provide service for your money and what you can do if you start to feel unsatisfied with his or her performance.
Lawyer/Client Relationship Questions
When you hire a lawyer, you're agreeing to work with someone over a certain period of time. You need to ask questions about how the attorney will communicate with you and what responsibilities you hold in the relationship. The attorney should let you know the best channel for quick communication and you need to inform him or her when you want updates.
You should also ask questions to get to know the attorney as an individual in order to ensure this is a person you can trust. Ask about their legal philosophy and how he or she views the lawyer/client relationship. Great questions to start off with are ones that will make your life easier, such as how to keep fees down or what daily disruptions you should expect from a long legal battle. The more forthcoming the lawyer appears to be with individual needs, the better.
You may keep a lawyer on retainer or you could turn to an attorney during specific situations. Here are some common reasons people begin seeking legal representation or advice:
You Know Your Limitations
If you sign documents and you come across a word you don't recognize, you need assistance. You may need a third party to help you navigate important employment or real estate paperwork. It's essential you fully understand the terms of any legally binding documentation or activity you become a part of. If you are not an expert in a given field, you'll want to hire an attorney who is.
A lawyer may find legal implications or opportunities you might miss. If you find yourself in a civil or criminal matter, a proper attorney ensures you don't receive a harsh punishment for a small mistake.
You're Facing an Important Event/Decision
When making decisions critical to your financial stability or personal life, you may want a lawyer with expertise in your situation to make sure you do everything you can to arrive at the proper resolution. This is especially true when you become involved in a criminal case and your freedom is on the line.
It's not just a matter of legal knowledge; lawyer's have access to numerous resources you do not. They have staff ready to work around the clock and experts in a variety of fields to give your important issues the attention they deserve.
You Can't Be Impartial
During times when personal matters intersect with legal proceedings, you may need to have an advocate to prevent your emotions from getting in the way of level-headed thinking. For example, divorce lawyers can mediate a heated argument and help both partners get on with their lives.
Emotional investment could be subtle. You may want to have a lawyer look over an investment opportunity that looks too good to be true or investigate the merits of a possible civil suit when you feel wronged.
You're Out of Options
Many people turn to lawyers when they are in trouble. If you've been accused of a crime or are in a terrible financial situation, you can find an attorney who will work with what you have available to assist you as you deal with your problems.
Personal injury lawyers find solutions for people who can no longer work under their own power and bankruptcy attorneys prevent people from giving in to debt. If you find yourself in a situation where you can't find a solution, a lawyer may be able to offer the counsel you need.
When it comes time to choose a lawyer, you should start by searching close to home. While you probably don't want the conflict of interest that comes from being represented by a family member, friends and loved ones can recommend lawyers who served them well in the past. If you do have attorneys you are familiar with, ask who they believe would be best for you.
After going through personal references - especially from individuals who had similar needs - you should broaden your search through public information resources. You can call your area's attorney referral service or check legal organizations like Martindale-Hubbell. There are other resources available online. You should check websites for client reviews and other third-party forms of approval.
When you build a list of possible candidates, perform a background check on each one. See if you can find information on their history and success record. Once you find a possible lawyer, you should call to arrange a consultation so you can ask your important questions in person.
By performing the necessary research and taking every available precaution, you can narrow your search to the attorney most suited to your needs.