Depending on your situation, a lawyer can have a major impact on the course of your life. They can defend you in a lawsuit, ensure you get fairly compensated for your work, fight for your kids in a child custody lawsuit, and more. Of course, for many reasons, lawyers can be extremely expensive, and you want to make sure you only invest your money in an attorney who will get you the results you need. As such, making the decision about what lawyer you will hire isn’t something you want to take lightly. Here are three ways to make sure you are getting your money’s worth with an attorney.

Look at Their Track Records

You should be able to check an attorney’s success rate and the types of law they practice relatively easily. Look at Google and an attorney’s own website to see what sort of cases they practice and what legal resources they are able to access. Furthermore, all court records are now online. You can usually search those records by an attorney. Try doing that and evaluating the success rate for an attorney you are considering hiring.

Use Review Sites

Review sites like Avvo draw from a variety of sources to provide information about each lawyer. There are also many other review sites that you can use to get this information. All of these websites can help you make an informed judgment about an attorney. However, be warned: No matter how good an attorney is, at some point, they have probably angered a client. Don’t let one or two bad reviews scare you off of a lawyer. However, if you see bad reviews repeatedly, and they all say similar things, you should probably think twice about using that attorney’s services.

Check Professional Ethics Records

Lawyers are prohibited from representing clients in cases where they have a conflict of interest. All states have professional review boards that examine ethics complaints against lawyers. Before hiring an attorney, make sure to type their name into these searches and confirm that no ethics complaints have been successfully made against the attorney you are considering hiring.

Hiring the right attorney is a decision that can, quite literally, change your life for decades. This decision is one you must take seriously and diligently. As such, do your homework before making any decisions about what attorney to hire. Make sure you ask friends for feedback and use the above three steps to determine if the attorney you are considering hiring is right for you.

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