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 …
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From Business: By using only highly qualified experienced lawyers, your case is solved - right now! Combining decades of experience with careful attention to detail, you can pro…
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…
Hired her for help with a divorce, she billed me $40,000...kept making promises of thing that would occur.Not worth it.
Dishonest and fraudulent attorney who does NOT comply with California Bar standards. Tells you whatever you want to hear. Rude and arrogant, self-obsessed, owns a million dollar home in Clayton and will sue you at the drop of a hat. The worst attorney I have ever met and known.
Carolyn Cain has got to be the worst attorney I have EVER dealt with. Litigation to avoid costly trial? Are you busy for the next FOUR years?! If the thought of going to court for the next four years doesn't bother you - how about spending upwards of 15 to 17 thousand dollars in all those filing fees? Declarations brimming with unnecessary requests, continuances and poor judgement. I bring this up because YOU will be PAYING for all of these. When a lawyer lacks trial/courtroom savvy - they tend to be experts in filing notices, etc. This is NOT what you are hiring your attorney to do. My advice is to ask around for a good TRIAL attorney. Get into court and get it DONE. Otherwise you are serving as nothing more than a really big paycheck to an attorney who is best interested in your money. It's not right but it's part of the game and this attorney is very skilled at it. Jennifer - if you read this...it's spelled INSPIRATION (good luck with law school).
I hired Carolyn to help me out with a bunch of probate issues i was having with my family estate that my father left for us. Well she dove right in and before i knew it, she had everyone in my family pissed off at me and she wasnt even doing what i asked her to take care of. Instead she starts filing all kinds of declarations to the court about this and that. Costing me way more money than she led me to believe it was going to cost me. She was very short with me if i even questioned any of her tactics. Basically telling me that because im not an attorney to keep quiet and let her do what she does. Very hard to get a hold of her too. She twisted the truth so bad in court, i was embarrased
These guys know what they're doing. You can be confident that Bancroft & McAlister has got your back when it comes to your legal interests!
I have known Carol since 1998 when she asked me to upgrade her phone system. She has been the most helpful person I have ever met when ever I needed help. I cannot say enough about her except if you want some one to do the right job for you then she is the one you should depend on. Thank you Carol.
Charged 210.00 for the following two responses via email, "If you would like a list of all assets in the trust, I will have the trustee provide you a list." (Which didn't happen! In addition, "I'm not sure since I just got into the case. You should check with your dad on that one." I don't know what's worse, the bill or the fact that he charged .60 hrs for the two responses.
I have known Yolanda for many years. My now wife. separated from her ex-husband at the time, used Yolanda. This was a Highly Contested divorce. She remained in touch and up to speed on case, all while dealing with her other cases. She is very professional and very personable. She is simply the best. She is highly respected as an attorney.
Joe Wolch is a very dedicated and experienced lawyer. I have won my case due to his expertise in law .
When my husband and I went to see Mr. Kutrubes we were on the brink of losing our home and previously had two absolutely horrible attorney's that took tons of our money and made matters so mucked up that we thought there was no hope. One of our former attorney's in fact took our money and was then suspended from the Bar for misconduct within days of taking our money. We had a bad loan that we were stuck in and had been fighting with our bank for over 4 years when Mr. Kutrubes and his staff worked a miracle by saving our home, fixing the mess we were in and obtaining for us a very affordable loan modification. That was a year ago and we are now on the mend. With each passing month since the ordeal, we continue to improve and are beginning to put the whole horrible ordeal behind us. I can not say enough about Mr. Kutrubes. He has been without a doubt one of the best attorney's we've ever had.
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.