In this article, Vishal Saini Advocate has explained How to find the best lawyer. This is one question that always comes to a person’s mind when he/she is in a need to hire a lawyer for him/her. This article is providing a solution to finding the best lawyer for your case.
How to find the best lawyer?
If you are looking to find the best lawyer, you’ll find no shortage of legal talent. India holds about 18% of the world’s population and 0.1% approx 1.3 million of it are lawyers as per a right to information (RTI) response by the Bar Council of India (BCI) to an advocate, with an average annual growth rate between 2007 and 2011 of about 5 per cent. These days females are doing law more than males.
There are so many advocates out there practising law in courts on a daily basis. With so many lawyers out there, it becomes more important that you choose the right one for you. But how will you choose the right one for you or how will you get to know that the one you have chosen is right for you? Choosing the wrong advocate can be disastrous, so you must do good and quality research before choosing an advocate for you. This article will give you an idea that all points you should keep in your mind while searching for an advocate for yourself.
First of all, you need to understand the difference between a lawyer and an advocate.
Who is an advocate?
A lawyer who represents you using morally upright, practical, and economical tactics is known as an advocate. He is a lawyer who has received legal training and a licence to practise. Although “lawyer” is frequently used instead of “advocate” in India, section 2(1)(a) of The Advocates Act, 1961 specifies “advocate” as the official term.
The Advocates Act, 1961’s definition of “advocate” can be found here.
Types of Advocates
There are two classifications of advocates, senior advocates and other advocates, according to Section 16 of The Advocates Act of 1961. If the Supreme Court or a High Court decides that a lawyer deserves to be designated as a senior advocate due to his qualifications (bar membership, legal experience, or specialised knowledge), they may do so with his approval.
Senior advocates and other advocates are two classifications of advocates that are defined by the Advocates Act of 1961.
However, the Supreme Court made a provision for the third class of advocates—advocates on record—in the course of exercising its regulatory authority.
How to find the best lawyer? – Question to ask yourself before hiring an Advocate
Do you need an advocate?
I. Interpret your problem carefully before thinking of hiring an advocate.
Start with the basic question “Do I need an advocate?”. Sometimes it’s good if you know that is there a need to find an advocate for yourself or not. If a lawsuit is filed against you, or you are charged with some crime, or if you need a divorce, then, it’s good to have an advocate for yourself. Advocates are not just for criminals or for the ones stuck in the litigation process. Qualified advocate also provides advice and knowledge to the people who just want to talk to them as an expert or an adviser.
II. Determine whether it is feasible and reasonable for you to resolve the issue on your own by asking yourself and those around you.
Many times, you might be able to resolve the situation on your own, without the assistance of an advocate. For instance, if an internet business has treated you unfairly, you can discuss your complaint with them if they have a customer service helpline. On the other hand, there are occasions when it is preferable to follow an advocate’s advice since they will prevent you from contacting the wrong person and ensure that you don’t take any actions that can later harm your case.
III. Determine how important your situation is
If you are charged with a crime or if you are in a legal suit as a defendant, there is an immediate need to contact an advocate. Even in cases where your right is infringed and you are injured you should seek advice from an advocate as soon as possible, as delaying may jeopardize your right to seek relief in a court of law.
Even if you are seeking legal help merely to avoid future problems, it’s never too early to start up your legal search for an advocate.
What characteristics ought you to search for in a possible Advocate?
You should be comfortable talking with your advocate. The most important quality is that you should feel at ease when your advocate is around. You can communicate the pertinent information regarding your case more freely, totally, and honestly when you have a comfortable and open relationship. Without having complete knowledge of the case, an advocate without a comfort level cannot help you.
You should conduct online research on the advocate before meeting with them in person. You should read the reviews and comments regarding the advocate’s services posted online. Therefore, you should seek out a person who has an excellent track record of providing his services and who has no complaints, misbehaviour claims, or malpractice allegations against him.
Finding someone who is an expert in your particular field is not necessary, but it is best if you locate someone who is either specialised in your field or has experience in the subject to which your problem is related. For example, it is preferable to hire a person who specialises in commercial law rather than maritime law if you have a legal issue that is relevant to your problem.
Make sure the advocate is eager to comprehend your issue. Regardless of how serious your issue is, your lawyer needs to know what you want from him and how you see the case developing.
Being able to communicate
Look for someone who can make you understand every word they say and who speaks in a way that is simple enough for their audience to comprehend. You should probably look for another advocate if the one you have is employing legalese and doesn’t try to define the terminology he or she uses. The issue of “how to pick a good lawyer” is challenging to answer, but the points that will be covered below may assist you in making an informed decision.
Find someone who will be there for you whenever you need them. The advocate should be accessible to meet with you when it is most convenient for you, not the other way around. He needs to respond to any urgent calls or messages right away.
A fair and transparent pricing structure
The location, size, reputation, and experience of an advocate or his or her company, as well as the experience of the advocate, all affect the fee. A competent lawyer will be upfront, truthful, and reasonable in his or her fee schedule. Thus, you ought to seek out someone who costs you a fee commensurate with the case.
What to ask a prospective advocate?
I. How long have you been in the legal profession?
Before hiring an advocate, the first thing you should inquire about is his level of experience and whether he has been practising for a while. The case and circumstances will determine who is better equipped to manage your legal difficulties. However, it is up to you to choose who you want to hire as your lawyer—someone with experience or someone just out of law school.
II. What kinds of cases do you handle most frequently? How much of your practice is focused on the (practice area that the client’s issue relates to)?
Additionally, you should be aware of the advocate’s area of specialisation and how much of his work pertains to the subject matter of your legal dispute. For instance, if you need assistance with a lawsuit involving your business, your top priority might be to look for a corporate attorney who has experience with cases of a similar nature.
III.Who are your usual clients?
When recruiting advocates for themselves, clients frequently fail to ask this crucial question. For instance, the advocate you are dealing with may not be the greatest selection for you if you have a legal issue involving adoption but they primarily represent companies.
IV. How many situations like mine have you handled?
This is not the time to be passive and timid. You should feel free to inquire about the advocate’s past performance, including how many cases like yours he has handled and how many instances he has won or settled.
V. What additional skills or training do you have that would be useful to me outside your law school degree?
Cases like DUI and patent cases necessitate expertise and knowledge for a good defence. Make sure your case falls under the heading for which the advocate has received specialised training or understanding.
VI. What are your rates and expenses, and how is billing handled? Who is going to take my case?
It’s crucial for you to understand whether you will be able to pay for the advocate’s services and how the payment process works. Ask about the possible payment methods as well.
You should also find out who will be handling your case. whether paralegals or legal assistants will handle the entire case or only a piece of it. If so, request a cost reduction.
- The Advocate Act, 1961