top 10 reasons hire an attorney

March 5, 2018 - Posted by: admin - In category:

taxes - No Responses

I recently saw an article with this title.  In this age of DIY, folks often wonder where to draw the line between hiring a professional and utilizing Google to gain the requisite expertise to do their own work.

The article is found on hirealawyer.findlaw.com, so there is a distinct bias towards hiring an attorney.  Even so (and with my similar bias), I believe that most of the information in the article is accurate.  In particular, items #2 and #7 in the article relate to the fact that overall cost savings (and pain avoidance) are often obtained by hiring competent professional help at the beginning.  Said another way, preventative law is always better than emergency law.  I like to think I coined that phrase, but I’m sure it came from an attorney far wiser (and older) than me…:). But old or new, truth is the truth.

To use the analogy of building a home, if a person elects to build their own house and messes up the foundation, the costs associated with fixing the foundation of the home (after the fact) are going to be significantly more than if the individual had obtained qualified foundation expertise at the beginning.  In like manner, it is often the case that people who do their own legal work, whether via the bevy of internet resources or otherwise, end up with difficulties and paying more in legal fees later.

Would you rather pay an attorney to write your legal documents correctly or pay an attorney to litigate over your legal documents later?  Not always the choice, but often.  Litigation attorneys usually drive nicer cars and take more expensive vacations than many transactional attorneys.  Why, because the fees associated with commercial litigation are often tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars (or more).  On the other hand, as complex and fancy and fully awesome as a written contract may be (or even several contracts), even the very best transactional attorney will be unable to justify a bill for such contract drafting and negotiating that comes anywhere close to the cost of commercial litigation.  In fairness, some court cases can take several months and even years to fully resolve (i.e. months or years of attorneys and other professionals billing by the hour), so that explains why the litigation costs can be so high.  In any event, I refer again to the wisdom and associated costs savings in doing preventive law (the right way).

You can read the article on hirealawyer.com if this is of interest to you.  Much of the article deals with the expertise of litigation attorneys to successfully navigate the pitfalls of lawsuits.  To analogize to medicine, litigation attorneys are somewhat akin to surgeons—very much necessary at times and when needed, able to perform a great service for clients.  Even so, you and I would greatly prefer to avoid both surgery and litigation whenever possible.

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