What should i look for in an attorney?
There are several aspects to consider when choosing an attorney. Not only should you find an attorney who is qualified and experienced, but you also want someone with whom you feel comfortable and secure. There are many ways to find an attorney--through a personal reference, on an advertisement, at a local event, or though an Internet search. Take some time to read about the individual lawyer and the firm. Make sure he or she works with your type of case. Many attorneys offer a free initial consultation. Take advantage of this opportunity to ask any questions you may have, to gauge your personal compatibility with the attorney, and to discuss the specifics of your case and any legal fees. At the Law Offices of Hugo A. Ortiz, we pride ourselves on establishing great relationships with each of our clients and providing quality results. Click here to schedule a free consultation.
How do i know if you handle my type of case?
Visit our Practice Areas section to read through the types of cases with which we have the most experience. If you are unsure of which category applies to your case, or if your case falls under a category that isn't listed, please call the office or click here to schedule a free consultation. We will evaluate your case and, if necessary, refer you to a trusted firm in the area.
How much is my Case worth?
Just as no case is the same, neither is each outcome. We recommend scheduling an initial consultation to talk through the specifics of your case and hear how different situational elements affect its worth.
When is the right time to hire an attorney?
It is generally recommended that you contact an attorney as soon as possible after the occurrence, because there are important legal time limits to consider. Illinois law sets forth specific time limits depending on the type of case and the kinds of parties involved. Our attorneys work with each client to ensure timely and efficient progress in order to guarantee the best possible outcome. Click here to schedule a free initial consultation with the Law Offices of Hugo A. Ortiz.
What kinds of fees do lawyers charge?
There are a few different kinds of fee agreements, which usually depend on the type of case and the individual attorney. A flat fee is a set amount for a specific service. A contingency fee, which is the most common at the Law Offices of Hugo A. Ortiz, means the client doesn't pay unless the case is won. The attorney's fee is taken from any amount that is collected on behalf of the client, usually as a fixed percentage. Some minimal up-front costs may apply, such as filing fees, court costs, and discovery costs. A retainer is an advance payment taken before an attorney begins working on a case. Hourly fees are itemized for the time taken to work on a case. Remember that your lawyer should provide a written contract which lists the specific breakdown of fees.
What Level of Communication Should I Expect?
Near the beginning stage of your case, your attorney will be in frequent communication with you to gather all necessary preliminary information. This may require meetings, phone calls, letters, etc. During this time, it is important that you are available to answer and ask relevant questions as well as provide any relevant paperwork. Once the case proceeds, the need for communication drops substantially. It may be weeks or months between each subsequent step in the development of your case. This is generally the standard for the vast majority of legal cases. For example, the opposing attorney may take weeks to respond, or a judge may schedule the next court date several months ahead. For this reason, it is not necessary to contact your attorney for frequent updates. He or she will keep you informed as necessary. However, should an important question or new issue arise, including a change in medical condition, call your attorney and/or schedule an appointment. In the event of an address or phone number change, call to update your contact information. As always, you and your attorney should be on the same page in regards to the pace at which your case is proceeding. Click here to schedule a free initial consultation with the Law Offices of Hugo A. Ortiz.
If I'm not Satisfied with my current attorney, can I switch?
When working with an attorney, communication is key. Both the client and the attorney should lay out all expectations and calmly talk through any areas of concern. It is important for you to discern whether your dissatisfaction stems from a problematic case, or a problematic attorney. Your attorney should address and assuage your concerns. If you are still unhappy with your current attorney, you can either formally terminate the representation contract yourself, or you can seek out another attorney who, once hired, will take care of the transfer of representation.
Can I use online forms to represent myself without hiring an attorney?
Some legal procedures may be done without the help of a lawyer, such as an uncontested divorce or certain types of immigration-related applications. However, keep in mind that often times if the paperwork is not completely filled out correctly, there may be permanent disqualification. On the other hand, corrections and changes to the paperwork may be expensive and time-consuming, especially if unforeseen problems arise. It is advised that you consult first with an attorney to become informed of your available options. Click here to schedule a free initial consultation.
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