Laws and Lawyers in U.S.
The plain fact is, nobody knows how many laws, state and federal are passed. Estimates are that there are between 15,000 upwards to 50,000 federal laws alone and noting that former Governor Jerry Brown from California signed over 1,000 new laws into effect in his last year in office, (second term), estimates are that nationwide over 18,000 new laws are passed each year.
It's no wonder then, the U.S. has an estimated 1.35 million lawyers.
That being said, the vast majority of working lawyers, with the possible exception of small practice firms, tend to specialize. Have you come down with Mesothelioma from asbestos work while you were in the military? There are personal injury attorneys who only handle medical and malpractice cases. Whereas, if you were paralyzed as a result of a head-on collision with a drug driver on the highway, you need to locate one of the best car injury lawyers in your area.
A Niche Practice
Are you, your son or daughter facing years in prison for a drug deal gone wrong? Then locate one of the many top criminal defense attorneys.
The reason attorneys tend to specialize is not only are there thousands of new laws published each year but settled most law in the U.S. is based and built upon previous precedent so that as thousands upon thousands of lawsuits and criminal cases are settled, many of them which are appealed. There is an immense amount of details to be considered when assisting a client.
This flood of new information, new rulings, new cases, counter-cases, as well as changing Statues of information can be overwhelming to keep up with, and most lawyers find they serve their clients better by specializing.
How Do You Find a Good Attorney?There are many ways of finding an attorney. Just type in divorce lawyers near me into Google, and you will find hundreds of attorney sights, as well as so-called attorney referral sites.
The problem here is that almost all of them are profit-based behind the scenes, and there is no objective criteria as to how an attorney is recommended, so the single biggest piece of advice, besides seeking recommendations of friends or other attorneys that don't practice the type of lawyer you need is to interview them.
Questions to ask when interviewing attorneysWhen at an attorney’s office, ask:
- What types of experience do they personally have in the type of law you need?
- Ask how long they have been an attorney?
- Ask questions to determine their track record
- If they practice more than one type of law, ask what percentage of their cases are similar to yours
- Ask about any special certifications or skills
- Ask about their fees and how they are structured
And when asking this, be sure and pin them down to specifics, not generalities.
- Ask if they carry malpractice insurance
- And specifically, ask if they have any bar complaints or need to use their malpractice insurance.
- Ask who exactly would be working on their case within the firm
- Ask about unexpected fees
- Ask how they will communicate with you
- Ask for references
Once you interviewed several attorneys consider:
- Does the attorneys background and experience match your needs
- Were you treated promptly and courteously?
- Did they communicate with you well?
- Are you comfortable with all the fee structures?
- Do you feel they gave you an honest assessment of your case?
- What did the office look like? Were both the personnel and office staff neat and orderly?
When you need an attorney, the number one thing you must have is confidence they will represent you fairly and responsibly. Don't go by price, either the cheapest or the most expensive or judge by fancy office furniture. Look for sheer professionalism.
Check their references, and if you feel comfortable, pay close attention to their advice. You can also find additional legal aid here and you can search for a lawyer here.