The whole world is built on human relationships. The need to communicate with a lawyer, the same as with a doctor, is usually caused by a problem that needs to be solved, therefore, it already has negative grounds. Therefore, a potential client comes to a law firm for professional assistance in resolving his issue and sometimes does not know what to expect from working with a lawyer and how to behave. Usually, in the process of work, misunderstandings between a client and a lawyer can arise in such cases: doubts about the completeness and quality of the service provided; in the competence of a lawyer; in the amount of the service fee; in inflated estimates regarding the obligatory receipt of a positive result for the client, etc. In this article, we will consider some practical issues of proper interaction with professionals both in Kyiv and throughout Ukraine.
At the initial stage, successful work with a lawyer is based on building effective communication. You need to describe your case in as much detail as possible without hiding anything and provide all available documents, evidence, testimonies, etc. Withholding or misrepresentation of facts is usually revealed later, but may lead to the wrong strategy or type of legal protection. In a dynamically developing situation, it is necessary to inform your defender about new circumstances as soon as possible, because any delay can lead to negative consequences. Lawyers, in turn, need to explain to the client as clearly as possible the prospects for the development of the case and all the positive and negative aspects of each of the chosen ways to solve the problem. If the matter is protracted, then it is important to agree on a mutual communication schedule with the person in order to keep him in the loop and prevent too frequent distracting calls that do not benefit the cause.
The competence and professionalism of a lawyer play a key role in solving a client’s problem. Not all lawyers or legal counsels have the same specialization and wide practical experience. An experienced specialist, after a thorough analysis of the information provided by the client, will honestly inform the client about the degree of prospects of the case and will never advise spending money on a hopeless struggle without the possibility of obtaining a positive result. This principle closely echoes the principles of humanism, humanity, ethics, confidentiality of information, etc., which are professed by professionals in their field – lawyers and legal counsels. People should remember and adhere to the main principle – it is better to apply for a legal service a year earlier than it is needed than a minute later (i.e. if you have already committed an inevitable action, it is impossible to correct it without the advice of a lawyer).
The most common questions are about the cost of legal services and the compliance of the results of such services with the expectations of the client. It is no secret that the cost of legal services is formed taking into account the complexity of the case, the qualifications of the specialist and, most importantly, the amount of time that a lawyer needs to spend to achieve the desired result. To avoid misunderstandings, it is necessary to clearly state in the contract for the provision of legal services what services should be provided, what is their contractual cost, what is the responsibility for services not provided or of services of poor quality, what actions the Parties should take if the number of services changes in the process of providing them, etc. It is clear that in some cases (for example, complex court cases or even when developing and agreeing on an agreement with a counterparty, when there are a lot of comments and suggestions and they are constantly changing), it is difficult to immediately predict the amount of time spent by a lawyer and, accordingly, the cost of the service. Therefore, the parties should carefully agree on the rates for possible additional services or the cost of hourly legal fees.
Most often, clients can express their dissatisfaction both because of the cost and because of the quality (completeness) of the services provided by a lawyer in cases where a complex court case is being considered, where each of the parties has its own arguments and evidence. At the same time, for some reason, each of the parties to the dispute believes that it is they who should win 100%, forgetting that justice in Ukraine is carried out only by the court, which, in its opinion, evaluates the evidence provided by the parties and makes a decision. Usually in such cases, a person is inclined to accuse the lawyer of non-professionalism, that is, to find the culprit for his troubles, but this is usually not the case, although sometimes there are cases of unprofessional or negligent attitude of lawyers to the case or the provision of unreasonable guarantees to the client regarding the guaranteed win of the case in court.
To make your work with a lawyer pleasant, mutually beneficial and productive, it is advisable to adhere to the following recommendations.
Recommendations to the lawyer:
- it should be remembered that a client is the main person who needs to be provided with the most professional services and the best service;
- you should carefully study the client’s request, the documents provided, analyze the judicial practice on this issue, etc.;
- it is necessary to explain in detail to the client the features of the case, the positive and negative aspects of various solutions, further developments are possible, what services will be provided to the client when solving a specific issue;
- you should provide the client with detailed information about the cost of legal services, fees, additional costs, etc. and help analyze the feasibility of making certain monetary expenditures;
- you should inform about the timing of the provision of services, possible postponements or postponements of litigation, etc.;
- you should inform the client on all possible risks in the process of providing services and help prepare for participation in court cases.
Recommendations to the client:
- it is necessary to describe your issue in detail, provide the lawyer with all the necessary documents and other evidence, and clearly articulate the desired consequences;
- it is necessary to comply with all conditions agreed with the lawyer, to immediately inform the lawyer of any new circumstances or changes that have occurred;
- it is necessary to pay the cost of legal services in a timely manner;
- you need to be understanding and respectful of the lawyer’s working hours and disturb him outside the schedule only in urgent cases.
Finally, if you do not want to have unpleasant situations in dealing with lawyers, follow the above recommendations and carefully choose qualified lawyers.