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  March 02, 2017

When researching potential attorneys for your case, always do your homework.

Choosing an unqualified or dishonest attorney could not only result in a negative outcome for your legal situation, but it could also cost you more money in the long run.

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Here are four consequences of choosing the wrong attorney to represent you.

1. Lack of Communication
Communication is key to your successful attorney-client relationship. One of the most frustrating things that can happen during your case is being left in the dark. Unreturned phone calls and unanswered questions can leave you clueless about whether your legal matter is being properly handled — or even at all.

Your lawyer should be available to answer your questions and keep you informed of the status of the matter on a consistent basis.

2. Lack of Competence
Unfortunately, a law degree doesn’t necessarily equate competence in a particular matter. An incompetent lawyer could irreparably harm your case, and may cost you a great deal of time and money to correct the mistakes. However, not all mistakes can be amended.

The lawyer you choose should stay up-to-date on their certifications and remain active in legal associations. You can check Martindale-Hubbell and the State Bar directory for legal background information, certifications and peer ratings.

3. Lack of Ethics
Lawyers are bound to a code of ethics dictated by the state in which they practice. They are required to:

  • Loyally represent their clients
  • Keep their clients' communications confidential
  • Competently represent their clients
  • Follow the law
  • Place their clients' interests in front of their own
Lawyers that skirt the ethical rules, disclose confidential information, and keep clients’ settlements can be disciplined and even disbarred.  

4. Lack of Honesty about Fees
Lawyers should be open and honest about their fees. A few common complaints are:
  • The bill is not was agreed upon
  • The client was charged for additional fees that were not discussed
  • The bill is not itemized and the client has no clue what the attorney has charged them for
  • The client paid a large fee, but knows the paralegal did most of the work
  • The client knows the bill is padded and time spent on tasks is exaggerated

You should agree upon the fee early on in the attorney-client relationship. Additionally, your attorney should be open to discuss questions you have about their fee structure or billing.

If you are in need of a qualified, honest and competent attorney in the Amarillo area, contact Adair M. Buckner, Attorney at Law. To schedule a free consultation* to discuss your legal matter, call 806.220.0150 or email Adair at adair@adairbuckner.com.

*(The free consultation does not cover actual review of documents or giving legal advice on a specific situation.)

When researching lawyers, it’s critical you choose one you can trust. Download our FREE white paper, 5 Tips For Finding A Lawyer You Can Trust.

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Article Topics:
Legal Tips