Lawyers are often expensive - that's a well known fact. Why? A lawyer must complete college and law school, then pass the Bar exam before he can start practicing law. To keep his license he must also take courses in continuing legal education. This schooling is expensive and necessary. The law is complex and getting more so. The overhead of running a business - office rent, supplies, secretary - also is expensive.
Nevertheless, there are ways to reduce your legal fees. Following are some tips.
1. PREPARE FOR YOUR PHONE CALLS
You are charged for every phone call with your lawyer. Call only when necessary. Before calling, make a list of topics you want to discuss.
2. SEEK OUTSIDE HELP FOR EMOTIONAL PROBLEMS
No doubt about it, lawsuits are stressful and emotionally draining. However, your lawyer is not your psychologist or psychiatrist. It is less expensive to handle your stress by regular exercise, a healthy diet, and companionship with good friends. If your condition is serious, seek professional help. Your lawyer can provide a referral.
3. HONESTY IS THE BEST POLICY
Your lawyer needs to know the good and bad points of your case. The opposition will find out the bad points against you and exploit them. If you do not tell your lawyer the bad points, it will be more expensive for him to protect your rights and defend you.
4. FEE DISPUTES
If you believe you've been overcharged, make an appointment to discuss it with your lawyer. If you have discussed the matter with your lawyer, and your are still dissatisfied, contact the State, or local Bar Fee Dispute Committee, which mediates such disputes.
5. KEEP YOUR SENSE OF HUMOR
Lawsuits are expensive. Sometimes the results are unfair. Seldom does anyone get everything they want in a lawsuit. Just the same, keep your sense of humor. It will save you money by preventing you from litigating the non-essential points.
6. CALL FOR APPOINTMENTS
When you need to discuss the case, call ahead to make appointments. You are bound to be disappointed if you "drop in for a few minutes" because your lawyer more than likely will be busy with other clients.