If you find yourself in need of a lawyer, then chances are your life is already stressful enough. Legal aid is useful in a lot of complex situations, and the advisor you choose will aim to get you the best results possible in your legal case. However, the type of legal cover you receive largely depends on how much you are willing to spend.
Some court cases can drag on for months, or even years, and this time costs money. Therefore, you are probably wondering how you can reduce the cost of your legal fees without compromising on a level of expertise. There are ways to accomplish this, but you will have to read on to find out more.
Pick The Right Law Firm
Anyone unsure about legal council is likely to hire the first person they come across, regardless of the price. What’s more, most people assume that you will receive better legal advice if the firm is more expensive. This is strictly untrue, which means that you should always research the market when looking for legal aid solicitors.
Take, for example, the National Legal Service. They are legal aid solicitors offering their clients the option to pay an hourly or fixed fee. This decision depends on your circumstances, but it is still important to remember that you aren’t tethered to the first option you find. Shop around and you can find great legal advice that fits within your budget. Try to find user reviews for the company as well.
If you are being charged hourly by your lawyer, every phone call, email, or private meeting is going to cost you more money. While you must receive this advice during your case, you don’t always need to stay in contact as much as you think.
Try not to rush to the phone with every concern that you have. Save up your questions or queries for a time when you can get them all answered in one session, rather than using dozens of smaller consultations. Your lawyer should provide you with a time frame of events, which means that you should have plenty of opportunities to get your thoughts addressed before your case starts. Also, the internet is a hive of varied information. It is likely that you can google some of your concerns instead of needlessly spending money.
Do Your Own Research
A large part of any legal case is gathering enough evidence to prove your point. The act of accruing these documents is what eats up most of the time you have with your solicitor, but there is another way.
Your first meeting with your legal counsel should inform you about what type of evidence you should provide. These are likely to be items that are already in your possession or documents that you can acquire with a bit of digging. So why not do this research yourself? You will have a better idea about where to look, and this can save you lots of money on your hourly fees. What’s more, you still have your lawyer on hand to help you find anything that proves difficult, but it will cost you a lot less to utilise them at this moment, rather than expecting them to pull up research that you can do yourself.
Negotiate A Payment Plan
The professionals in the legal field are aware that their clients may struggle to pay for their services. That is why many solicitors are open to the idea of negotiating a payment plan to ensure that you pay your bills without going broke.
Your ability to negotiate will vary depending on what firm you visit, but it is perfectly normal to request a flat fee or to arrange to pay your bill in monthly instalments. Be honest about your situation and your solicitor will be more capable of helping you.
Be Efficient With Your Information
Legal cases only drag on if there is a lot of conflicting information presented during the trial. The lawyers for both parties will have to sift through and work out a way to prove their client’s statements, and this can take a long time if you are underprepared. Of course, the longer it takes to resolve a case, the more legal fees you will have to pay.
You can avoid a lengthy legal battle by being transparent with your lawyer as soon as you start your first meeting. A legal professional is more likely to find a way to help you if they have enough relevant facts to work with. Therefore, you can drastically reduce the cost of your case by being open about any events that have transpired. Even if you feel that you acted in a way that is counterproductive to your argument, your lawyer can anticipate this defence and plan a way to work around it in court.
See If You Can Settle Your Case
Not every disagreement between clients sees the inside of a courtroom. These proceedings are only necessary when there is too much conflicting evidence at play. Therefore, a judge or jury is required to make a decision based on the evidence at hand. However, if you feel that your case is fairly strong or that the other party is quite reasonable, you can try settling the case outside of court instead.
It is perfectly normal to work with a lawyer to reach a settlement with another party, rather than trying to prove your case in front of a jury. In these instances, the results are more amicable, and the case is resolved much faster than it otherwise would. If your attempt at a settlement fails, then you will just end up in front of a judge anyway. Therefore, it is always prudent to try and reach a settlement before going all in on a legal case.
It isn’t easy to drum up the money for legal counsel, so it is wise to keep your option open. The tips above will work in specific circumstances, so always make sure you consult with your lawyer to see if you can reduce the cost of your legal fees.