Ana Kraljevic Law Firm

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Etobicoke Family Lawyer- How to Find the Right One

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Finding the right Etobicoke family lawyer can be a daunting task. With so many lawyers to choose from in both Etobicoke and the Greater Toronto Area, it can be difficult to decide which lawyer is right for you. Make sure you do your research and find a lawyer who is a good fit. Here are some tips and questions to keep in mind for your first consultation with a family lawyer. 

1) Write down your questions

It may seem obvious, but you should bring a list of questions prepared in advance to ask the lawyer at your initial consultation. You may be nervous for the first consultation so writing the questions in advance will ensure that you don’t forget to ask them. The advantages of this are two-fold as the way that your lawyer answers the questions will provide great insight as to their confidence level and knowledge. The lawyer should be able explain the likely outcomes if the matter should proceed to court. 

2) Ask your lawyer what experience they have with your legal issue

Your lawyer should be honest with you with respect to their level of experience in dealing with your particular legal matter. For example, some lawyers are specialized in collaborative law and rarely go to court. Other lawyers are trial lawyers and knowledgeable about the rules of evidence. Use online resources like legal directories, bar association website, or lawyer referral services to find lawyers who specialize in family law. You may want to verify if the lawyer is a member of any professional organizations or if they have received any accolades in family law. Ensure your lawyer keeps their knowledge up-to-date.

Has your lawyer argued a motion or gone to trial? Reported decisions are published online on CanLii. Check to see what types of cases the lawyer has handled in the past.

3) Trust your Intuition

Do you have the sense that your lawyer read your situation correctly? Did your lawyer take the time to listen to you without interrupting every five seconds? How your lawyer speaks to you in the first consultation is a preview of their communication style and if they would be a good fit for you. You need to be able to work with your lawyer and feel comfortable asking them questions. Your lawyer should also ask you questions so that they do not miss any relevant points that are important to your case. Clients often do not know what is important and so the first consultation is important to canvass all the key information.

4) TRANSPARENCY ABOUT FEES

Ask your lawyer to explain their fee structure at the outset to avoid any nasty surprises at the end of the retainer. Typically, the retainer agreement will specify the hourly rate, retainer fees, and any fees for expenses such as filing fees. If you are on a budget, ask the lawyer if they offer any alternative fee arrangements. Some lawyers will offer a limited scope retainer or fees on a sliding scale.

5) Honesty and Integrity

An honest lawyer is worth their weight in gold. The importance of being represented by an ethical lawyer with a good reputation cannot be underestimated. Your lawyer’s credibility will impact your credibility. This is especially important if your matter goes to court and your lawyer attends regularly. Judges get to know members of the bar and they will remember if your lawyer did something unprofessional. Check lawyeratings.com and google ratings to see if your lawyer has any negative reviews. While sometimes disgruntled clients will leave sham reviews, if there are multiple complaints against a lawyer with the same type of complaint, you may wish to reconsider going to that lawyer.

Deciding which lawyer to retain can be a daunting decision. If you have time, consult with two or three lawyers so you get a better sense of which lawyer would be the best fit for you. However, anything more than that will likely confuse you. The lawyer should not pressure you to sign a retainer in the first consultation.

ANA KRALJEVIC LAW FIRM is a small respected law firm in Etobicoke. We are a boutique firm that works hard for our clients and we only accept a few cases at any one time. This allows us to provide the personal attention and counsel you deserve. We offer a no-obligation, complimentary 15-minute consultation.  

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