Accessing our services is a three-step process: initial consultation, opening a file, and carrying through with your action.
Your first consultation with us usually occurs by telephone or email. You can contact us at 306-445-7772 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Consultation allows you to share your situation, and allows us to identify whether we can help. Because we will not have opened a file at this point, we will only be able to provide general statements of the law, not specific advice.
Your first meeting with a lawyer is the most important aspect of consultation. At that meeting, advice moves from general to specific. The lawyer will ask you to describe what brings you in to the office. They will likely have a number of questions for you. If you have any documents that might be relevant, it may be helpful to bring them. The lawyer will give you a sense of how our office’s fee structure works, how much time your matter might take, and what steps you might take to achieve your goals. At the end of your first meeting, you and the lawyer will likely have enough information to determine whether to open a file.
Remember: at every stage, any information you bring to us is confidential and privileged. We cannot breach that privilege.
Opening a File:
Not every consultation results in opening a file. The lawyer may not have the time or the specific expertise that you need. You may not wish to pursue legal services after hearing the lawyer’s initial opinion. There may be a conflict arising from our firm having represented another party to your matter in some previous action. Both you and your lawyer will need to agree to working on your matter together.
If we do open a file, our firm will ask you to sign a retainer agreement. A retainer agreement is a contract setting out your agreement to use our services. Our usual retainer levy is five-hundred dollars, although we may suggest an increased or decreased amount depending on the complexity of your matter: for example, we do not normally ask for any funds for wills or for real estate, as our office charges a set amount for those services. A retainer levy is simply an amount of money you have the firm hold on your behalf to pay the initial fees on your file. We may also ask you to sign a disclosure agreement, allowing other parties to disclose to us any documents needed to resolve your matter.
Once your file is opened, we will begin working on your matter as soon as possible.
Carrying Through Your Matter
Some legal matters are resolved with one letter. Others take months or even years to conclude. Whether your matter is resolved quickly or takes an extended period, our commitment is to provide the best possible service to you, minimize your costs, and achieve your goals.
As we act on your matter, direct and ongoing communication, and clear instructions, are important. When dealing with a lawyer, you are the boss: the lawyer provides you with advice, and you choose the course of action that best suits your needs. If the lawyer does not know what you want done, the lawyer cannot act. Ongoing and effective communication between you and your lawyer are critical to achieving your goals in the fastest manner possible.
If you have questions about the process of dealing with your legal matter, any of our friendly staff can provide you with advice or point you in the right direction. We are here to serve you!