If you're thinking of filing any kind of lawsuit, whether it be a personal injury case, a defamation case, or anything in between, your first step will be to meet with a lawyer and discuss what has happened to you. At this initial consultation, the attorney will decide whether he or she thinks you have a decent case and tell you whether he or she can be of any assistance. To ensure you get the most out of this initial consultation, make sure you follow these dos and don'ts.
Do remember to bring any supporting documents with you.
One of the things your attorney will be evaluating in this initial consultation is whether or not you have enough actual evidence to prove that you are owed compensation by the other party. Bringing any documentation you have of the issue you're having, related expenses, and the like will help your attorney make this determination. If all your lawyer has to go on is your word, he or she may not feel you have a strong enough case.
Do bring along a friend or family member to listen in.
It may be hard for you to catch everything the attorney says, especially if talking about your case makes you stressed out and anxious. Having a second person along with you to take notes will help ensure that at least one of you hears and remembers the important things.
Don't forget to ask questions.
Typically, the overall format of the consultation will be the following: the attorney will ask you questions about your possible case, and you will answer them. Throughout this process, it's easy to forget that you, too, can ask questions. If you're not sure whether something is related to the case or not, ask the lawyer. Don't be afraid to interrupt the flow of conversation to ensure all of your questions are answered -- that's an important part of the consultation, even if it's not the primary focus.
Don't be embarrassed if you get emotional.
Many lawsuits involve emotional matters, so it's very normal for you to become sad or worried when discussing your situation. This will not be the first time your lawyer has experienced such, and it won't be the last. If you need a second to compose yourself, just say so. You can always step out of the room and get some fresh air if needed, and then come back to the consultation a few minutes later when you're more composed.
An initial consultation with an attorney can be stressful and tiring. By following the tips above, however, you ensure that you get what you need out of this process -- in spite of the stress. For more tips about taking a legal consultation, contact a firm such as Gomez May LLP.