When people find themselves in a legal situation, one of the first things they think about is whether or not they should seek legal advice. Hiring a lawyer may be incredibly important in some situations, but it isn’t always necessary. To make the right decision, you need to take a look at the severity and complexity of your legal problem. The following is a list of situations where hiring an attorney is essential.
Facing a Lawsuit
If you’re being sued and you stand to lose a large amount of money, you should definitely get legal assistance. Since the other party has already hired a lawyer, it can be very difficult for you to win the case on your own. Although you may not end up going to court, you still need a good negotiator to help you reach a fair settlement with the plaintiff.
Dealing With a Nasty or Complicated Divorce
If you and your spouse mutually agree on every detail of the divorce, you don’t really need to hire an attorney. Nonetheless, a divorce can be complex if there are issues of property, savings, investments, debt, alimony, and child custody. In such a situation, it’s necessary to hire a divorce attorney. When a divorce is finalized, the terms are very binding, meaning you can only change them by going back to court. A good lawyer can help you avoid unnecessary trouble by making sure everything is properly done the first time around.
Suing for Wrongful Termination or Workplace Discrimination
Whether you’re filing a lawsuit for wrongful termination or workplace discrimination, you need to understand that such a case involves state and federal laws that an average person doesn’t understand. Only a good lawyer who specializes in employment law is qualified to represent you in court. You can be sure the party you’re suing will have highly competent legal representation, so you should too.
Getting a DUI Charge
Driving under the influence (DUI) is a serious offense. Depending on the circumstances, you may have to pay a fine, serve time in jail, lose your license, or face any combination of the three. With the assistance of a lawyer, you have a better chance of getting your charges reduced, especially if you’re getting a DUI for the first time. Never fight a DUI charge in court without an attorney, unless you don’t mind receiving the maximum penalty.
Facing Drug Charges
Penalties for drug charges can vary from a small fine to several years in prison. In this type of case, defendants who hire their own lawyers almost always get better results than those who don’t.
It’s important to bear in mind that public defenders are often overloaded with cases. For a defendant facing drug charges, a public defender will most likely recommend a plea bargain, which is typically worse than what a private lawyer can get you. Even if you’re financially eligible for a public defender, you should still ask a family member, relative, or friend if they can help you hire an attorney.
Being Charged With a Criminal Offense
Facing a criminal charge can be frightening. It’s easy to lose your case if you aren’t aware of your rights as the accused. If you find yourself in such a situation, you should contact a lawyer as soon as you can to protect your rights and ensure you’ll be properly defended.
Sustaining Bodily Injuries in an Accident
If you’ve sustained injuries in an auto accident through no fault of your own, you can expect the at-fault party’s insurance provider to be eager to settle your claim as soon as possible. Avoid settling your claim or even speaking with the representative of the insurer until you’ve consulted a personal injury lawyer. If you aren’t familiar with personal injury laws or the compensation rates that apply, you may end up getting much less compensation than you deserve.
An experienced attorney has the necessary knowledge and skills to help you get fair compensation from the insurance company. Remember, if you happen to be injured in an accident, you shouldn’t talk to anybody except the police who are at the scene.
Making a Will or Trust
If you’re planning to create your will or trust, it’s essential to work with a reputable lawyer. You should make your first will soon after you have a child and then revise it every now and then as circumstances change throughout your life. Properly setting up your will or trust can prevent your family members from getting into legal disputes after your death.
Starting a Business
Whether you plan to start a sole proprietorship, partnership, or corporation, you shouldn’t try to navigate the legal requirements and procedures on your own. An attorney who specializes in business law can help protect your rights and make sure you comply with the laws.
How to Find a Lawyer in Illinois
If you’re facing one of the aforementioned situations, you need to start looking for a good lawyer immediately. Bear in mind that there are many different kinds of lawyers, from criminal to business. As such, you have to make sure you hire one who has the specific legal expertise you need.
To find the right attorney in Illinois, you can either ask your family members or friends for a referral, contact a local or state bar association, or search print or online directories. Depending on your legal problem, you can hire a lawyer to provide full representation or give you legal advice on an hourly basis.
If you’re looking for a reputable law firm in Illinois that handles personal injury, medical malpractice, and criminal cases, consider getting in touch with Alvarez Law Office. Since 1974, Walter L. Alvarez and his team of lawyers have helped numerous people recover fair compensation for their physical and financial losses through successful court cases and settlements. Our extensive legal knowledge and outstanding investigation skills enable us to help you build a strong case and get the justice you deserve. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.