The law can be a very confusing animal, there is very little doubt about that. If you have found yourself in the position where you require the services of a solicitor, then you need to know what you should be able to expect. This is especially true if you have never been involved with a solicitor before.
What we mean here, is the communication between the client and the lawyer. If there is an issue with communication, then you are likely going to end up wondering if you have a competent lawyer or not. Whatever kind of lawyer you are working with, and this will depend on your case, there is a certain level of communication that you can reasonably expect.
This is true whether you are working with family law solicitors or a firm specializing in criminal injury. You should be given a general overview of your case, whenever you choose to ask for it. You should also be able to expect your calls and emails to be answered in a timely manner. This doesn’t mean immediately, but you should be given an explanation if it doesn’t happen inside of a day.
Not all excuses are valid, they won’t always be tied up in court, so may have cause for concern in some situations. If you find that your calls repeatedly go unanswered, or it takes a long time for questions to be addressed without reasonable explanation then there could be a problem. Your first recourse should be to try and address the communication issue with your lawyer, but if that tack fails then it may be time to seek new representation.
Lots of people are surprised to hear that not all lawyers are competent. They went to law school, right? How can they not be competent? Because the law is so complex, and so diverse, many lawyers choose to specialize – and this is where it can become an issue. If you have a family lawyer working your medical negligence case, then you are quickly going to have questions about competence.
This doesn’t mean they are bad lawyers, but you need to find the right lawyer for your needs. In addition to that, lawyers are not robots. Occasionally, mistakes can happen just as they can with anyone else in any other profession. Another thing worth keeping in mind, is that since sitting the bar exam they probably haven’t sat another test since. Continue reading