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Hiring a Lawyer: Clients and Lawyer Fees

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Having problems with the lawyer someone recommended to you or who you thought was recommended by an “online service” or a “best ever lawyers in the whole wide world” list?

It is not enough just to get a recommendation for a lawyer who can help you with your legal problem. You need to do a some preliminary research and have a conversation about fees and service with that lawyer.

If you do absolutely nothing else before you hire a lawyer, please:

1) Check the lawyer’s bona fides, i.e. contact your state’s legal licensing organization.

2) If you’ve never hired a lawyer before, ask that licensing organization if they have any information or advice about hiring and paying a lawyer. My favorite online primer on legal fees, from the Washington State Bar Association will be useful to anyone in almost any state, but do check with your own state’s legal licensing organization. And follow their advice!

3) If you have time for a little more, I recommend you start with the Nolo Press book: The Lawsuit Survival Guide: A Client’s Companion to Litigation, by Attorney Joseph L. Matthews

Previous Oregon Legal Research blog post: Are you a licensed attorney?

The Washington County (Oregon) Law Library guide: How to Find a Lawyer in 6 Steps