Choosing An Attorney When you're getting ready to hire a lawyer, follow these tips for finding one that will work best for you.

At your initial conference with an attorney you'reconsidering hiring, take note of what the lawyer says and does, andlook for the following qualities:

  • Experience. Although it's not essential to find anexpert in your particular field, it makes sense to look for someonewho specializes in small business problems. And make sure thelawyer is willing to take on small problems-if you're trying tocollect on a small invoice, will the lawyer think it's worthhis or her time?
  • Understanding. Be sure the attorney is willing to leanabout your business's goals. You're looking for someone whowill be a long-term partner in your business's growth.
  • Ability to communicate. If the lawyer speaks in legaleseand doesn't bother to explain the terms he or she uses, youshould look for someone else.
  • Availability. Will the attorney be available forconferences at your convenience, not his or hers? How quickly canyou expect emergency phone calls to get returned?
  • Rapport. Is this someone you can get along with?You'll be discussing matters close to your heart, so make sureyou fell comfortable doing so. Good chemistry will ensure a betterrelationship and more positive results for your business.
  • Reasonable fees. Shop around and get quotes from severalfirms before making your decision. However, don't compareattorneys based on fees alone. The lowest hourly fees may notindicate the best value because an inexperienced attorney may taketwice as long to complete a project as an experienced onewill.
  • References. Don't be afraid to ask for references.Ask what types of businesses or cases the attorney has worked within the past. Get a list of clients or other attorneys you cancontact to discuss competence, service and fees.

Excerpted from Start Your Own Business: The Only Start-Up GuideYou'll Ever Need

Editor's Pick

A Father Decided to Change When He Was in Prison on His Son's Birthday. Now His Nonprofit Helps Formerly Incarcerated Applicants Land 6-Figure Jobs.
Lock
A Teen Turned His Roblox Side Hustle Into a Multimillion-Dollar Company — Now He's Working With Karlie Kloss and Elton John
Lock
3 Mundane Tasks You Should Automate to Save Your Brain for the Big Stuff
Lock
The Next Time Someone Intimidates You, Here's What You Should Do
5 Ways to Manage Your Mental Health and Regulate Your Nervous System for Sustainable Success
Business News

'Do You Hate Me?': High School Teacher Shares Wild Emails He Receives From Students

Jordan Baechler teaches high school students in Ontario, Canada.

Fundraising

Working Remote? These Are the Biggest Dos and Don'ts of Video Conferencing

As more and more businesses go remote, these are ways to be more effective and efficient on conference calls.

Growing a Business

The Best Way to Run a Business Meeting

All too often, meetings run longer than they should and fail to keep attendees engaged. Here's how to run a meeting the right way.

Data & Recovery

This Father's Day, Give the Gift of No More Low Storage Warnings

Save 85% on 1TB of cloud storage for Father's Day.

Business News

Hedge Fund Pays NYC Interns $20,000 a Month on Average, Sent to Lavish Palm Beach Kickoff

Citadel is known for its over-the-top parties and company retreats.