Above all else, the Attorney-Client relationship must start with trust. Make sure to talk with any attorney you may hire to establish mutual trust before proceeding.
What is the purpose of the initial consultation?
We at M. Reid Legal Solutions (MRLS) like most firms offer a no-obligation initial case. The initial consultation may be in the lawyer's office, over the phone or for those techno- savvy we offer web-cam and web based presentation conferences. This opportunity is typically when both you and the attorney will be determining if there is a good fit and therefore a good working relationship.
MRLS believes you shouldn't have to pay a lawyer to find out whether you like them or if you are a good fit. This initial meeting is a chance for you to get a feel for whether we are a match. It is also your opportunity to find out just how much we can assist you during this difficult time without the pressure you will get at most lawyer’s offices.
At the initial consultation, expect the following:
A review of your history and your desired outcome.
An assessment of the facts surrounding your situation which will allow us to determine what legal issues and defenses are present and how to best deal with your current dilemma.
The preparation of a case roadmap outlining how your matter will be handled and who will be your primary contact.
The opportunity to ask all of your questions and get answers to those question you may have and ones you may not have even thought about.
(the one question most lawyers can't and shouldn't answer is "what are my chances?"
Discussion about our fee for handling your unique situation as well as payment options.
What and who should I bring to the consultation?
Bring everything that you have. If you have the police report, bring it. Bring all documents you were given. Bring any documentation from any prior situation that you believe may be important. If you have any questions of whether you should bring any given document always bring it .For our DWI clients drunk driving cases you may have been involved in. Also bring as detailed of a traffic infraction history as possible which you can obtain from your local DMV office. This information will better help us assess your particular case. From there we will send you home with some homework that will allow us to better assess your case and give you a better idea of what to expect. For our bankruptcy clients please bring we ask that you bring anyone and anything you believe we need to know. The first thing we will need to do is determine 1. If you should file for bankruptcy protection and if so under which Chapter. In determining if bankruptcy is the right path for you we will look at a number of things. First, will you lose any property? Second, we will look at is what kind of debt you have. Finally, we will look at how much money you make. Based on this, we make the decision which direction suits your particular situation. When we open your file, we will send you home with some homework to gather information and set up your next appointment. But don’t worry we will walk you through the entire process and give you a checklist. When you come back we will go through everything to make sure it is all complete and then we will set you up with one last visit where you will sign the papers that we will file with the court. Before you come back for that final visit, you will need to complete a credit counseling class, but we will register you for that and give you instructions for how to complete it.
Will I have to make a decision at the consultation?
NO. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO MAKE AN IMMEDIATE DECISION. No potential client should ever feel pressured to make a quick decision by a potential attorney. You are the employer, the attorney works for you not the other way around. We are here to assist you. HOWEVER please understand that in DUI/DWI situations time is short (as little as 15 days) before some of your rights are lost forever, including you right to drive. Also understand that in bankruptcy the sooner we file the case with the court, is when you are officially protected from all of your creditors. They will not be able to foreclose on your home, your car will be safe and the garnishment must come off your check. So the sooner we get the case filed, the sooner you will be protected. However, we can discuss these matters and the final decision is yours.
Should I consult with more than your firm?
You should interview as many lawyers as it takes for you to know in your mind and in your gut that you are hiring the right one. It may take one consultation, it may take a dozen. In other words, if you are not completely positive that you want to hire us for whatever reason, we will refer you to any number of other competent attorneys. The only thing you should not do is represent yourself