The attorney-client relationship is one of the most complex one among all kind of professional relationships that we come across in different industries and fields. There are protocols and standard guidelines which have to be followed, there is attorney-client privilege in place and there are many such rules which bind the relationship. A lawyer is your legal representative and he or she is there to help you in legal matters.
Once you have gone through and completed the tough task of hiring a good lawyer, the next thing which you need to know is what are the services and other different things that you can expect from you lawyers. So, a let us have a look at various aspects of different things that you can expect from your lawyer. Though different lawyers have different ways of working, these are few common things all of them are supposed to do.
Communication is an important aspect of any kind of relationship and the lawyer-client relationship is no different. The communication has to be efficient and clear so that there is no void in the relationship and the case does not suffer because of this. So, the first and foremost part of the communication is that the lawyer must always be ready to give you an insight and the summary of overall proceedings of the case. Getting the knowledge of his line of attack and his proceedings related to different findings of the case is not a luxury; it is the mandatory part of the lawyer-client relationship.
The lawyer does not have right to refuse the information about proceedings in any case. The maximum time lawyer can take to answer your query is one business day. However, in the world of information technology, it should not take more than 10 hours. Also, if the lawyer does not respond to your phone calls, e-mails or any other form of communication within a single business day, he is liable to explain you the reason behind the delay in responding. Needless to say, the reason has to be appropriate and the ones like, “I didn’t see you had called” or “I was too busy to look into my mail account” will not do. So, in case your lawyer is not going with these compliances, there are some problems which has to be discussed.
If the discussion on the avoiding of calls and not explaining the proceedings does not turn out to be fruitful, you will have to consider the fact that whether choosing this attorney was a correct decision. If the discussion and the reasons of the lawyer do not satisfy you, you have all the rights to look for some other lawyer.
Lawyer ethics are something which is absolutely compulsory, as the attorneys have to comply with them. No attorney is allowed to neglect any of the points which come under the lawyer ethics head. Violation of any of the ethics will lead to punishment by the bar association. Let us have a look at some of the ethics that the lawyer has to comply by.
- Attorney-client privilege has to be complied to by the lawyer. Attorney-client privilege means any truth or fact which is a part of communication between the two parties cannot be disclosed to any third party.
- The lawyer has to avoid conflict of interest. Conflict of interest is the situation when the lawyer is representing some other client, whose interests might go against you. For example, if the attorney is representing a company against which you have filed a lawsuit. In such case, the attorney will have to drop one of the two clients.
- Doing everything within the limits of the law by the lawyer.
- The lawyer will have to represent the client is a competent manner.
There is no leverage for any lawyer, however experienced or inexperienced they may be, in terms of ethics.
The competency of the lawyer is very important. He or she needs to possess the knowledge required to handle your case, however complex the laws may be. If the lawyer does not have the knowledge of the law, he or she should inform you about his incompetency and refer you to some other attorney who has the knowledge required for the case. It is a compulsory term and if any lawyer represents you incompetently, he is liable to be punished.
Attorney fee of all kinds, from the billable hours to the charged required for filing the case, has to be discussed clearly before the hiring. There has to be a written agreement between two parties on this.
These are some of the things that you can expect from any lawyer you hire.