Category Archives: Attorney Client


What Is an Expert Witness and How Do You Get Them?

What is an expert witness? A key component that can literally make or break the outcome of a trial.

But hiring one can cost anywhere from $200-$1000 an hour, or even into the triple digits for more specialized topics. So you want to be sure that the witness will provide the value that you’re looking for.

Read on to learn why you might need them for your case and how to find them.

What Is an Expert Witness?

Lawyers bring in expert witnesses when they need to explain something to the jury that the average layperson wouldn’t understand.

For example, doctors are often brought in to testify during medical malpractice cases. It’s important for juries to know what would (or wouldn’t) have happened had the doctor involved in the case taken different actions.

Expert witnesses are independent of the case. Unlike regular witnesses who are called in to tell the jury what they know about the case, expert witnesses don’t have any personal knowledge of the case.

As such, the rules for expert witnesses are a little different. Regular witnesses are only allowed to testify about what they saw or heard. They are not allowed to give their opinion.

Expert witnesses explain how something relevant to the case works. They also analyze the facts and give their professional opinion on them. The opinion must be based on sound science.

They are allowed to discuss even pieces of evidence that are considered inadmissible. For example, X-rays might normally be considered hearsay in court, but a doctor can examine and testify about them.

Who Can Be an Expert Witness?

Anyone who has specialized knowledge in a particular field or topic can be an expert witness. Doctors or medical specialists often testify in cases of malpractice. Accountants and other financial experts, forensic scientists, mental health practitioners, and vocational experts all commonly appear as expert witnesses in courts.

Sometimes, unusual expert witnesses are in order. Consider this example of a personal injury case in which the client slipped on a tree nut in the parking lot of a major company. The attorney called in an arborist as an expert witness to explain the life cycle of the tree nut.

His explanation indicated that the nut had been there for over a week. This, in turn, indicated that the nut had been there long enough that it should have been cleaned up during routine maintenance, thus winning the case.

The best expert witnesses take complex, high-level topics and explain them in a way that the average person can understand. Helping the jury understand a key component of the case can literally change the outcome.

In some cases, the information is as complex as the lifecycle of a tree nut.

Qualifications of an Expert Witness

Of course, in order to be an effective expert witness, their qualifications must first be established. It’s easy for the opposing counsel to discredit an expert witness if they don’t have a solid profile.

To that end, the witness will prepare a report detailing their credentials. The report will also show how their knowledge fits in with the case and why their opinion is relevant.

Additionally, as the witness gives their testimony, they should supply the court with facts and information as well as explain their relevance to the subject matter.

In the case of scientific testimony, the expert will also have to explain the process they used to arrive at their conclusion. Without this information, it is relatively simple for opposing counsel to call into question the witness’ testimony.

The admissibility of the witness’ testimony is entirely reliant on the judge. If the judge determines that their process was flawed, the rate of error is too high, or the results are not reproducible, they can deem the testimony inadmissible and the time and money you put into the witness go out the window.

How to Find an Expert Witness

Not all expert witnesses are created equal. The right one makes all the difference in court so you must choose carefully.

Simply typing “expert witness near me” in Google will probably return a list of results. But they will be mediocre at best. Hiring an expert witness is expensive, and as we’ve seen, everything has to be done right to avoid losing their testimony or its credibility.

Going through a company that provides expert witness referrals is a better move. They thoroughly vet each expert witness in their directory to ensure high-quality witnesses.

Some referral services specialize in a certain type of witness, like medical experts. Others are more general.

Your lawyer may also already have connections with expert witnesses they’ve used in the past. Or they may be able to ask around amongst their colleagues for a referral.

For a very specific or unusual type of expert, like an arborist, you might need to go knocking on doors at your local university to find a suitable expert. But if the expert you find has never testified in court before, be sure that your attorney is prepared to coach them well on how to present themselves and their opinion.

Turning the Tide of Your Court Case

We hope we’ve cleared up the question “what is an expert witness?” As you’ve learned, expert witnesses can be expensive but integral to the success of your case. As always, talk your situation over with your lawyer to effectively plan your strategy.

Looking for more great law advice? Keep browsing our site! We have information on everything from how to handle a personal injury case to filing for divorce.


Taking A Look At The Ins And Outs Of Attorney Client Privilege And What It Truly Means

Do you ever wonder what your lawyer would do, if you confessed to a crime?

Well, the good news is, he or she is ethically bound to keep it a secret. They can’t testify against you in court, nor can they record a private communication and use it as evidence against you.

And that, in a nutshell, explains attorney-client privilege.

You, as the client have the right to confidentiality. As the attorney, they have a duty to keep this confidentiality. As with any rule, there’s a lot more nuance to it than that, and there are also certain circumstances where this “privilege” could be waived.

In most cases, what you say can be disclosed to nobody, however, it’s always good to familiarize yourself with the concept to make sure your own interests are protected at all times.

In What Situations Does Attorney-Client Privilege Apply?

What creates or imparts an obligation upon a lawyer to keep your conversations in confidence? One obvious factor would be the presence of an attorney-client relationship.

Here are a few general rules to keep in mind:

  • You must either be an actual client or display the potential of being one.
  • You must communicate with the attorney in the capacity of a client, where your attorney is acting in a professional capacity.
  • You must have had the intention of keeping all communications completely private.

This, in turn, might beg the question – what if you disclosed something during a consultation, but chose not to retain your lawyer? The answer is – your attorney is still bound to keep your information private.

If you are a non-client, you can claim this privilege on the grounds of being a potential client. In most cases, the following circumstances will qualify you as one.

  • You sought legal advice from the attorney.
  • You intend to rely on such advice in the capacity of legal advice.
  • The lawyer does not attempt to discourage you from following such advice.

If all these circumstances are met, the lawyer cannot disclose any of the information provided, without the express consent of the client. In general, even if the client were to die, the lawyer would still be bound by this rule and require to keep all discussions in their confidence.

The Rationale Behind the Duty of Confidentiality

The reason behind this rule is simply to allow clients to be able to communicate freely and openly with their attorneys in good faith. For this to remain a possibility, there, therefore, has to be some sort of rule that inhibits their attorneys from testifying against their own clients by using information divulged to them in confidence.

It allows room for the client to be as vulnerable as they want with the freedom of knowing that whatever they say cannot be used against them in a court of law.

Attorneys are therefore prohibited from discussing the client’s case with anyone else, whether in a formal or informal setting, without the permission of their clients.

However, if a client decides to communicate his affairs in the presence of others, the lawyer is not bound by a duty of confidentiality. For example – let’s assume you have a personal injury claim and you are communicating with a truck accident attorney in their own private cabin. Under these circumstances, your lawyer is not at liberty to divulge this information to anyone.

However, if you were to communicate the same information in a public cafe, in the presence of several other people, the same rule would not apply.

The Past and the Future

So what happens if you confess to fraudulent behavior in the past versus a plan to act fraudulently in the future?

In the former situation, you would still retain your client-attorney privilege. However, in the latter, you may not. Most states have exceptions that allow a lawyer to break this kind of confidentiality in the event that it would prevent some serious injury, death or crime.

Waiver of the Privilege

There are certain other circumstances where most state laws would allow for the waiver of the attorney-client privilege. In general, the following circumstances would allow it:

A Client Waiver

A client can choose to waive this privilege at any time they please. They can waive it with regard to certain people (a legal team) or waive it entirely.

When the Client Is a Corporation

When the client itself is a large corporation, the power to waive privilege would lie with the management. These might include the officers, directors or whoever else is specified as such within the company laws. Death of such directors,  would not be considered the death of the corporation, which is the true client.

So, this privilege would then pass on to the next director in line and remain with the members of the main managing committee.

Exceptions to the Rule

Some exceptions to the rule include situations where the attorney represents two parties in a single matter. These parties cannot claim such privilege against each other in subsequent matters regarding the same dispute or subject.

Finding the Right Attorney

Now that you’re familiar with the rules of attorney-client privilege, be sure to look up your lawyer’s reputation before choosing one. Make sure you do a lot of research and find someone who is well-versed with the laws surrounding your case.

If you know any of their previous clients, consult them on their experiences and ask for honest reviews.

Like this article? Browse our legal categories to find more informative content under any branch of law.

5 months ago Attorney Client , Laws

A Guide on When and How to Hire an Attorney After a Car Accident

About 4.5 million people were seriously injured in car accidents last year. If you happen to be a part of this statistic this year, you may want to consider hiring an attorney.

Knowing when and how to hire an attorney can protect you. Your attorney will ensure that you ask for total compensation, negotiate with the insurance company, and look out for your best interests.

Keep reading to learn how to know you need an attorney.

The Insurance Company Is Not Your Friend

You’re entitled to compensation for the damages you incur. This includes both your vehicle and medical costs. We all like to think that insurance companies are there to protect us with our best interest in mind.

However, this is not the case. The insurance company’s priority is their own business and budget.

Look for an insurance claims attorney who has experience negotiating with insurance companies.

Know What You’re Entitled to

Do you know all of the damages that you have a right to ask for? You can recover medical expenses, property damage, and even lost wages. Then in some states, you can also ask for damages for pain and suffering.

Hire an attorney to ensure that you ask for all of the damages that you’re entitled to.

The Accident Is Complicated

If you experience severe injuries or there are multiple parties, then you’ll need an attorney. Cases that involve these characteristics tend to be more complicated and take longer to resolve.

An attorney will ensure that you file against the correct party. They will also fight for your right to compensation for all of your damages.

Proving Liability

To collect, you need to prove liability. An attorney will know and understand the different elements of the law and how to provide acceptable proof for each.

Hiring an attorney will greatly increase your chances of successfully proving the different elements to establish liability.

Don’t Risk Financial Loss

If you don’t file your claim in time, you may miss the window for the statute of limitations. This means you lose your right to recover because you can’t file a claim.

Some states also have restrictions on when you need to seek medical treatment after the accident. For example, in Florida, you need to seek treatment within 10 days of the accident. Fail to seek treatment, and you will be barred from recovery.

Your attorney will ensure that you meet all of the deadlines. That way, you don’t accidentally end up costing yourself money by missing a key deadline.

Know How to Hire an Attorney

If you’ve just been injured in an accident, you need to know how to hire an attorney. That way, you have someone who is on your side looking out for your best interests.

Your attorney will walk you through the lawsuit process. They’ll help you determine what damages you can ask for compensation for. Then they’ll help you review the insurance company’s settlement offer and negotiate for the best possible outcome.

Search our inventory of lawyers to find the right one for your needs.

9 months ago Laws , Attorney Client

Everything You Need To Know About Power Of Attorney After The Death Of A Loved One

58% of people age 53 to 71 have estate planning documents that will help manage their estate in the event of their death.

When that happens, an estate executor is named that will take over the legal and financial obligations of the deceased. But if that person has a power of attorney, then what happens with power of attorney after death?

Figuring out the legal terms following a death is a difficult but necessary task. In this guide, we’ll tell you where one role starts and the other ends. Keep reading to learn more about the legal power of attorney and their role after death.

What Is Legal Power of Attorney?

A person who requires someone to make decisions and sign documents on their behalf can assign a Power of Attorney to another individual. They can choose a trusted individual from among their friends and family, or they might choose their attorney.

The person who designates the power of attorney is known as the principal. The individual who is given legal power of attorney is called the agent. They can be given broad or limited powers.

With broad powers, the power of attorney has unlimited authority over legal and financial transactions, as allowed by state law. Limited powers are restricted to a single matter or field.

The purpose of a power of attorney is to act as the person’s agent during their lifetime. The power of attorney is expected to help protect the individual’s estate while they’re alive.

What Happens to Power of Attorney After Death?

The law across all states dictates that power of attorney expires when the principal dies. However, expiration doesn’t take effect until the power of attorney is aware of the death of the principal. In practices, this means that they may continue to act on their behalf until they’re aware of the death.

Following the expiration of the power of attorney, the executor of the state is responsible for legal and financial matters. Named by the will, the executor is bound by the provisions of that will.

So while a power of attorney represents a principal in life, the executor represents the principal in death. Though the executor is only required to follow the instructions laid out by the will. In the case there is no will, the intestate laws of that state decide the estate of the deceased.

What About A Durable Power of Attorney?

There are two types of power of attorney: durable and non-durable.

If a person is assigned non-durable power of attorney, their duty expires when the principal becomes incapacitated. When the principal is incapable of handling their own affairs, a non-durable power of attorney is no longer valid.

On the other hand, a durable power of attorney would continue in their role despite incapacitation. This type of power of attorney doesn’t provide authority over life or death health care decisions. And although it provides a broader range of powers, it also expires upon death.

Need Legal Help?

The power of attorney after death ceases to have any power. Whether broad or limited, durable or non-durable, the legal power of attorney only grants powers while a person is alive. Following a death, the executor of the estate takes care of a person’s estate according to the terms of the will.

For more legal information regarding estate planning, be sure to check out our blog.



3 Things to Ask Your Lawyer About Prelitigation

Are you wondering if there are more assets like homes, businesses and rental properties that you are not aware of? This is an issue that could be running through your mind if you are a creditor and have filed a legal claim against a borrower who has defaulted on his or her payments. Your lawyer is likely wondering about the same thing and may hire the services of a private investigator to conduct a Prelitigation Asset Search. This process is a standard part of prelitigation proceedings, and it can either help you settle your claims out of court or boost your chances of winning the lawsuit.

In most cases, however, it will be more favorable for you and the other party to settle your dispute during the prelitigation process. Doing so can spare you from the tedious and drawn-out process of the actual litigation. If you are not familiar with prelitigation, below are three questions that you should ask your lawyer about the process.

1. Should I Settle?

3 Things to Ask Your Lawyer About PrelitigationPrelitigation refers to any activity that takes place regarding a legal claim before you formally file a lawsuit. Once you have filed a claim, you have essentially started the prelitigation process. It is during this stage where your lawyer may hire an investigator to gather more facts and documents to boost your case.

You should ask your lawyer if it is better to negotiate for a settlement than go through with the lawsuit. In most cases, it is more beneficial to settle the claim fairly without having to file the case. Your lawyer will present you with the facts of your case and point you toward the best direction. Ultimately, you’ll have to decide whether to settle or go through with the lawsuit.

2. What Are the Benefits of Negotiating?

3 Things to Ask Your Lawyer About PrelitigationNegotiations to settle a legal claim during prelitigation is usually informal, with lawyers representing both parties present. Discussions ideally should focus on the facts of the claim with both parties trying to come up with resolutions and arrangements to settle the claim. Prelitigation negotiations offer a faster and cheaper alternative to solve the dispute.

Lawyer fees for prelitigation proceedings are far less expensive than having him or her file the lawsuit. Costs of a lawsuit include the expenses for preparing and filing your case, depositions, motions and the billable hours that the lawyer spends to prepare for your trial.

If you ask your lawyer the benefits of negotiating, he’ll likely give you the facts of your case and the best possible result that you can expect from negotiating. This should further influence your decision whether or not to push through with the lawsuit.

3. Will the Settlement Be Fair?

Asking your lawyer this question will put him or her on the spot, but it is a fair question to ask nonetheless. To answer your question, the lawyer has to assess or even hire an investigator to make sure that the debtor is being honest. Your lawyer will then present you with the figures and leave it up to you to conclude whether or not it is fair.

There are other issues that you need to consider when deciding whether or not to proceed with the lawsuit. Do you want to keep the costs down, maintain a good relationship with the other party or keep the negotiation and resolution confidential? Your answers to these questions will help your decision-making during the prelitigation process.

12 months ago Attorney Client

The 3 Most Common Types of Lawyers You’ll Need in California

A personal injury attorney is one of the three types of lawyers that you need to have on your contact list or even hire on a retainer in the state of California. Whether you are planning to become a permanent resident or work for a certain period in California, it will be a good idea to know the likeliest types of legal representations that you might need. This is not to imply that you are sure to lodge or face a lawsuit should you decide to live in the state. Rather, the following is more like knowing where the umbrella is just in case the rain starts to fall. Therefore, what kind of attorneys should you look for if you are planning to move to California? Here are the three common types of lawyers that you need in California.

Foreclosure Fraud Attorney

If you plan on living in and owning a home in California, it will do you well to know one or two foreclosure fraud lawyers. Fraud schemes related to mortgage debt and foreclosure abound in the state, and you sure don’t want to be at the receiving end of one. Whenever crises in real estate occur in California, more people prey on homeowners especially those who they know are having money troubles. Scammers know that such homeowners are also likely having problems making their mortgage payments.

One such scheme is “dual tracking,” and the lenders themselves are the perpetrators. In this type of foreclosure scam, the lender is working his way to foreclosing the property while making the borrower believe that he is supposedly trying to find ways to resolve the loan. The scammer will surprise the borrower by sending a notice of default or a trustee sale.

This scheme is illegal in California, but you need a specialist in this field to help you deal with it. A good foreclosure fraud attorney will see signs of dual tracking however innocuous they may seem. California laws are designed to protect borrowers from dual tracking and other types of foreclosure frauds. Knowing a good foreclosure fraud attorney will help make sure that you enjoy this protection to the full.

Personal Injury Attorney

The 3 Most Common Types of Lawyers You’ll Need in CaliforniaIn California, personal injury pertains to any mental or physical harm that is inflicted on a person due to the negligence of another. Such injuries can be minor or can be so bad that it becomes fatal. This, however, does not apply to damage to property. Among the examples of personal injuries are those that are caused by accidents that involve automobiles, boats and trains; slip and falls; dog bites; and medical malpractice. If your lawyer is successful in proving that the other party was negligent, then you stand to collect money as reparation for the injury that you have sustained.

There are many reasons why you need to know at least one good personal injury lawyer. One of these reasons is that traffic accidents happen most frequently in California than in any other states in the United States. This is due to the large number of vehicles plying the state’s highways where you’ll also likely to be driving on once you move to California. Should you suffer the misfortune of being involved in a fender-bender, you’ll be thankful that you have the number of a good personal injury lawyer to help you deal with a personal injury lawsuit. Your lawyer can help explain your legal options or collect compensation if you were the aggrieved party.

Employment Attorney

The 3 Most Common Types of Lawyers You’ll Need in CaliforniaLabor laws vary from state to state, and you’ll benefit from knowing a good employment lawyer if you are coming to California to work. They can be a godsend especially in recessionary times when employers try to cut their losses by shortchanging their workers. You can also consult an employment attorney if there is anything about your employment that you are not comfortable with and see if your work conditions are compliant with state regulations.

Knowing the types of lawyers that you need in California is one thing, finding good ones of each type, however, is another. Before settling on any lawyer that comes up on your search, it will do you well to do your research on those that you may hire soon. Most lawyers often offer a free initial consultation. You can take this opportunity to find out more about the lawyer and see if he or she suits your requirements.

12 months ago Attorney Client , Ethics

What to Expect When Meeting with a Lawyer

When a legal concern arises, hiring a lawyer may be the smartest option. Most lawyers meet with clients for an initial consultation. Initial consultations essentially serve as an opportunity to determine if you want to hire a specific attorney to handle your case and offer you legal advice. If it’s your first time meeting with a lawyer, you may not know what to expect and how things will work.

It’s common for potential clients to be nervous or anxious when scheduling an initial consultation with an attorney. As a result, it can seriously benefit you to know what to expect when consulting with an attorney. What follows is a guide covering the basics of attorney-client consultations for the purpose of helping you navigate meetings and communications with your lawyer, or a lawyer that you are looking to hire. It will also discuss how to understand the fees and services that come with legal representation.

1. How do you prepare for your meeting with a lawyer?

Being prepared for your meeting with a lawyer can help relieve tension and increase your general comfort about the upcoming meeting. It is also essential to focusing your meeting with a lawyer so that he or she can give you accurate and relevant advice regarding your claim or legal matter.

To be best prepared for your meeting, you should gather all of the significant and relevant legal documents that relate to your case. If your lawyer has sent you forms to complete or requested certain documents, ensure they are accurate and completed to the best of your ability in advance and be sure to bring them with you to your meeting with a lawyer. It is common practice for attorneys to distribute client information sheets that need to be filled out before a client’s initial consultation. Completing paperwork, such as questionnaires and intake forms, helps your attorney narrow down what questions he or she will ask you, ensuring that your meeting time is spent productively. If you have received legal documents, either from the court or an opposing party to your case, it is important to bring these with you so that the attorney can review them and better understand your case.

It is also recommended that you write down a brief timeline of the events. This can help refresh your memory before your meeting with a lawyer and set the foundation for you to think about what you would like the outcome of the case to be. Creating a timeline can also serve as a good reference point, or a checklist, for gathering all of the necessary documentation. Additionally, a timeline of the events surrounding your case is extremely useful to an attorney during and after your initial consultation. The process of creating a chronological order of events can help you, and your attorney, strengthen your legal arguments. Having a clear visual representation helps all parties involved in the case to have a better understanding of the sequence of events.

You can also refer to your brief timeline of events to build a list of all the concerns and questions you may want to communicate during the meeting with your attorney. For example, you may be curious as to what kind of strategy the attorney is going to recommend for handling your legal matter or who else will have access to your case file and confidential information? It’s typically common to ask what the lawyer charges as a fee for his or her services. You may also want to get clarity on any additional costs that you may be expected to pay.

Some attorney’s websites may provide information that can answer some basic questions that people commonly ask about the consultation or appointment process. While it may not be perfectly applicable to your situation, it can provide you with some basic legal vocabulary and an understanding as to different types of cases. You can also read about a firm’s attorneys–including things such as their educational and professional credentials. Asking questions about this information can being to cost you money if the lawyer explains it to you, but the tips and information on an attorney’s website are accessible at no charge.

2. What should you expect the meeting with your attorney to be like?

First and foremost, it is important to remember that lawyers are people, too! They understand that it can be nerve-wracking to meet with an attorney for the first time–especially when the meeting involves disclosing private information and discussing sensitive matters. Keep in mind that lawyers are looking to help you with your legal issues and ultimately help you come to a resolution that satisfies you.

Most initial consultations are scheduled for one hour, but the length of your actual appointment time may vary. The complexity of your case, and how much information you have prepared in advance, usually determines how long your appointment lasts. Your first meeting with an attorney is an opportunity to share your story and obtain a powerful tool–legal representation. While it is important to tell your story, it is also important to get comfortable with each other. It is strongly suggested that lawyers and clients attempt to build a relationship with open communication, honesty, and trust. In addition to some general “getting to know you” questions, the attorney will ask you questions that are designed to focus the discussion on the background facts of your case that he or she feels are relevant or significant. He or she will take time to understand your current situation, develop your case, and work with you to decide how to resolve your claim.

Regardless of whether your legal issues involve a personal injury, criminal defense, divorce, or bankruptcy law issue, it is a client’s responsibility to be honest and as accurate as possible when relaying the events and facts of your case to your attorney. Honesty and full disclosure are always important when meeting with an attorney. Lawyer’s offices are safe environments where attorney-client privilege and confidentiality rules apply. Whatever you discuss during the your meeting with a lawyer stays private. If you have questions about attorney-privilege and client confidentiality, do not hesitate to ask your attorney to explain it to you.

Failure, to be honest, can significantly impact your case–there’s even a chance that you may be unable to win your lawsuit. The outcome of the case could go unfavorable if any unanticipated information or evidence comes out. When your lawyer is fully aware of the facts of your case, he or she is able to best determine whether you have a valid claim, and then continue on to prepare strong arguments to support your case.

It can be difficult to recall what was discussed during the meeting with an attorney. Even though you are meeting with him or her to share your story, your lawyer will have a lot of information to share with you in return; they will answer your questions, debunk legal myths, and offer peace of mind. Taking notes on important discussion topics during your consultation can help you remember key points from the conversation. For example, there may be follow-up information or paperwork that the lawyer asks you to acquire in order to proceed with your case. Everything the attorney says may feel important, but don’t feel the need to try to get everything down. It’s more important to listen to the lawyer’s advice and be able to ask any questions that may arise.

If the lawyer determines that you have a valid legal claim, and is willing to take your case, it is likely that you will be presented with a retainer agreement. This will usually be presented to you at the end of your initial consultation. Your attorney should explain the terms of the retainer agreement to you and you should not sign it until you are sure that understand it. Basically, this agreement is a contract that stipulates your obligations to the attorney, as well as the attorney’s duties to you. Some of the duties that may be listed in a retainer agreement include: protocol for communicating with you about the status of your case, the approximate rate the attorney is charging you for his or her legal services, any payments that are required at the onset of representation, and the frequency in which you are expected to make payments.

3. What should you know about making payments to your lawyer?

There are two ways that clients pay attorneys. The first way is called a “retainer,” where the client pays the attorney in advance for his or her legal services, and when the lawyer has worked for the full amount of the retainer, the client pays the attorney at their hourly rate. Retainers are most common in cases that don’t involve claims for money–usually criminal defense, divorce, and bankruptcy claims.

It’s normal for lawyers with more practice experience to charge higher fees than newer attorneys. Sometimes, an attorney may be able to work out a payment plan so that you can make reasonable payments over time. If you are unable to afford the fees that your lawyer outlines in their contract, ask the attorney whether he or she is willing to come to an alternative agreement regarding fee payment.

In cases like personal injury or workers’ compensation claims–cases seeking money–it is common for lawyers to stipulate to a set “contingency” fee in a “contingent fee arrangement.” When an attorney agrees to work on a contingency basis, he or she agrees to accept a fixed percentage of the amount recovered by the client. Percentages vary, sometimes depending on professional experience, but it is typical that attorneys working on a contingency fee basis be paid one-third (33%) of the amount recovered. During your meeting with an attorney, he or she will explain that a contingent fee agreement means that if you lose, you don’t have to pay the lawyer for his legal representation. However, the lawyer’s services are different from filing fees and court costs. Regardless of the case outcome, clients are typically responsible for paying these additional expenses.

At the close of your meeting with a lawyer, you should make sure that you have shared all the necessary information and raised all of your questions and concerns. Ideally, you should leave the consultation feeling comfortable with contacting your attorney, clear about the next steps in your case, and confident that your legal matter is in competent hands. Although meeting with a lawyer can be intimidating, being prepared and knowing what to expect can help you navigate the process successfully.


Author - Madaleine Gray
Legal Contributor ~ Madaleine Gray


The Legal Tricks of Dating Sites: The Mistakes We Make

Online dating sites are a place where millions of people go online to find the love of their life or a quick hookup. No matter what it is that you are looking for on these sites, people tend to make the same mistakes when registering. Some of these may be used to make a person feel safer when they date, but others are borderline or outright illegal. All in all, here are some important legal tricks of dating sites that you need to watch out for.

Agreeing to Terms They Haven’t Read

The first and most common legal mistakes that we make when it comes to dating websites is not reading the terms and conditions of the website. A lot of people want to feign ignorance when they violate the terms of use for a given website, but the fact is that too many people just hit accept when they see the terms appear. That isn’t necessarily illegal in and of itself, but the fact is that you make yourself liable for violations by willfully ignoring the rules and then saying that you didn’t know you were breaking the rules or the law when you signed up. It’s a sticky situation to say the least, but one that is easily avoided.

Giving a False Name

It doesn’t matter what website you’re signing up for, there is always going to be a problem with supplying a dating site a false name. When you join this site or any other dating site, you are agreeing to allow the dating site know who you are on paper in case there are instances of inappropriate behavior. When you create and hide behind a fake name while you are on the website, you are at best breaking the rules of the website. At worst, you’re breaking the law depending on the name you use and the jurisdiction in which you sign up.  Sure, you might feel a tad safer by hiding your personal name, but it can still lead to issues. Be honest when you sign up for a dating site because your username hides your real identity anyways.

Supplying Illegal Pictures or Videos

A lot of dating sites are prickly about the content that you share on the website. Depending on where you’re dating from and where your date is, sending videos or pictures that feature nudity or sexual acts could be illegal for many reasons. Yet, people tend to persist in this form of communication even without thinking about the consequences. Most of the time, you won’t even get noticed by the dating website, but if you aren’t careful you can find yourself kicked off the website or reported to authorities.

Cat-Fishing for Money

The final trick that people use on a dating site that skirt legality is known as cat-fishing. This is when a person pretends to be someone that they are not and uses that identity to get gifts or to cause mental anguish to a person on the other end. The problem is that it is usually a man pretending to be a woman to get gifts from another man with promises of a relationship or other arrangement.  This is technically theft by deception and can cause a lot of problems on both ends. Take the high road and avoid or report this behavior when you see it happening.
There are a lot of things that can go wrong on a dating site in terms of legal tricks. By learning about the ones that we have put up here, you will have a lower chance of being affected by them. Remember, it is worth taking a look at the fine print before you sign a contract to join a website, and your conduct has to fall in line with the site’s requirements, too.


Dating a Lawyer: Things to Know in Advance

Depending on who you ask, dating a lawyer can either be a great victory or the path to misery. It’s no secret that a lot of lawyers get a bad reputation for being involved in the legal process, but you have to keep in mind that they have a personal life as well. Here are some things that you should keep in mind before you start dating a lawyer on your own!

Prepare for Rescheduled Dates

The first thing that you need to know about dating a lawyer is that they have an absolutely crazy work and life schedule. That means you will have to reschedule dates at a moment’s notice when they are suddenly called back to the office for a late-night strategy session or to review some facts. With online communications becoming more and more popular the fact of the matter is that it is easier for lawyers to communicate from home. The result is that your date might have to work even at home.

Long Nights are Common

As with the idea of rescheduled dates, the chances are high that you are going to have to deal with long nights at the office. You might think that you are okay with this in the beginning of the relationship, but it could sow some doubt down the line. Lawyers are often tasked with defending innocent people or ensuring that guilty ones are punished. In that context, it might be a little easier to spare your beau for a night.

They Might Not Make as Much as You Think

If you’re thinking about dating a lawyer for their large wads of cash that they make, the chances are that you will be disappointed. After all, not all lawyers make a lot of money with their firms. On average, you can expect them to make a living that is above average, but not by much. That being said, you will live comfortably, especially if they start climbing the ranks at their law office of pursue a career as a judge.

Lawyers Use Dating Sites to Find Love Because It’s Easy

Lawyers are not exactly the type of people that you find lurking at all night bars or clubs. They tend to be a little more bookish and seek out dates whenever they can. For that reason, the chances are better for you to find a lawyer on an online dating website like The fast and easy matching process along with the fact that they can date on the go is a high appeal to most lawyers. While they might not be able to spare time every single day of the week for chatting and dates, if you show some interest they will likely make time for you both to chat.

Most Lawyers are Looking for Long-Term Partners

The thing about lawyers is that they ache for stability. They like justice, the law, and the ability to get support from their significant others when work and life has them down. That means they tend to look for long-term partners instead of one-night stands. You might have some difficulty finding lawyers that are looking for hookups, but they will be lined up around the block for dates that could turn into something significant and long term. Make sure you tell your lawyer date right away if you are looking for something fast and easy or to find a real partner. Your honesty may get you any sort of relationship that you desire.
Lawyers are individuals that are as complex as the rest of us, but their job has certain features that you need to know about. Their unusual hours, tendency to need to work late nights, and their academic background might make it tough for someone to find a lawyer to date if they’re more wild in nature. Nevertheless, with these tips in mind, you’ll be able to approach a relationship with a lawyer with the kind of preparation that they would admire.


The Importance of Honesty in an Attorney-Client Relationship

Honesty between client and attorney is the backbone of any crimnal case.  Most lawyers will have an idea of what questions the prosecutor will ask along with all the evidence and witnesses.  After assessing all of this information your lawyer will map out a plan of where he thinks the case will go. He’ll then ask certain questions of you to help build his and or your case.  

This is where your full disclosure of everything he asks of you needs to be completely honest.  If you don’t handle the matter in this way then you are leaving the door open for surprises during your trial and your lawyer can possibly be blindsided.  If that happens you will most likely lose your case since your lawyer probably won’t be able to recover from the surprise.

Most lawyers will tell you that if you don’t tell them the truth it sours their view of you and can make a positive attorney/client relationship a negative one quickly.  Needless to say, this is not a good situation for you. There are two ways you can “lie” to your lawyer.

One way is to omit part of a story.  If you leave out important events or facts when you are explaining the story to your lawyer this gives your lawyer a false impression on what way to steer your case and also about the strength of it in the first place.  

The other “lie” is the flat-out kind.  For instance, if you say it wasn’t you when it was or maybe you state that you told someone they couldn’t do something when you actually said it was ok.  Anything similar to this can derail your case almost instantly.

One thing that should be mentioned is the way you communicate with your lawyer.  Meaning if you are unresponsive when he needs to reach you and get answers or information from you then your case will suffer.  If you are busy with other things such as your job or running a business you should allow time each day to check in or answer any communications with your lawyer promptly.  This will go along way to make your relationship with your lawyer run smoothly and allow him or her to provide the best defense possible for you and your case.

Similarly don’t put things off.  Try not to miss or reschedule a meeting with your lawyer.  The sooner they have all of the information they feel they need, the sooner they can get into your case and plan your defense.  You’ll also have some answers once this happens which will give you some idea of any outcomes you may be facing.

To summarize it is extremely important, to be honest, and give your lawyer all of the information you can.  Good or bad. Basically, you should answer all questions your lawyer asks you honestly.


© Copyright 2019 Halt Law Directory | Connecting Attorneys with Clients in Need. All rights reserved.