The justice system is a complex function of lawyers, aids, judges, law enforcement, and so much more. For the average system, there is often very little interaction with this system, other than perhaps having to pay a parking ticket or having a divorce hearing. Since there is little experience with the different aspects of the justice system, it can be hard to know what makes a certain individual credible and effective in their position.
Positions and Personal Choice
As a citizen, you don’t always have the freedom to choose who will be working in your community’s justice system. Law enforcement personnel are hired within the department, though some areas give citizens the ability to vote for the head sheriff or deputy. Many of the positions in the courtroom are also left to departmental hires, although positions like that of Judge Mike Tawil are sometimes voted on by community residents. When it comes to down to hiring a lawyer, that is something you have total control over, unless you are defendant that cannot afford to hire a lawyer. In this situation, you receive a court-appointed defense attorney, a position that was filled by the decision of the court system and not public opinion.
The Right Choice
To hire a lawyer on your own could cause a lot of stress and anxiety over the decision. After all, it could be your freedom on the line. Attorneys often a necessary but expensive service, so you want to be sure that you aren’t wasting your money with a poor choice. The initial consultation may have gone well, but you need to conduct some extra research before you hire them. There are five easy ways to look into an attorney a little further.
- Look up the state bar profile. For a lawyer to practice within the state, they must have passed the state bar and received their official license. Because of this, the attorney will be listed on the state bar association’s directory. Don’t be fooled by someone that seems official. Always check to make sure the individual is licensed. The directory will also show any ethical trouble that the individual may have gotten into in the past.
- Use Google and other search engines. With millions of users, you can find almost anythingyou want through Google or another search engine. People with information often publish it online, so you may see stories, articles, blogs, opinions, or even reviews associated with your potential attorney.
- Read the attorney’s website. Don’t just use the website to find out contact information. Look at the overall design and the information that is freely given. Look for testimonials, links to publications, and resources. A legitimate lawyer tends to reveal his or her qualifications willingly, rather than you having to dig around.
Going to court and relying on the services of an attorney can be a scary thing, and you need to know that you can trust your lawyer. Thoroughly vetting the qualifications and experience, by both digging around the internet and asking specific questions during a consultation, can give more confidence in the services you are paying for.