Unfortunately, probate can be a complicated area of law. Over the years, our courts have become very complex. The probate court can be a confusing, difficult place for people without a competent attorney. Although there is no requirement to do so, in most cases, the best way to protect your rights is to hire a competent probate attorney. The Probate Pro recommends the following tips for when to hire a Michigan probate lawyer:
- The Initial consultation should be free and specific. The initial consultation (first meeting) should be treated as an interview of the lawyer. A thorough review of your issues is the only way to adequately quote a fee and ascertain whether that probate attorney is the right person for you. Here are some wise questions to ask the attorney at your initial consultation to gauge whether the attorney should be hired.
- What are of law do you specialize in?
- What percentage of your practice is devoted to probate (litigation, administration, planning)?
- How many situations similar to mine do you handle in a year?
- How often you do work on conflicts that end up in getting litigated?
- Described the timeline of how my case should proceed?
- How will you maintain communication with me? How often?
- Please explain your billing process.
- Based on what you know about my case, what are the strengths and weaknesses of my case?
- Communication is important. Phone calls should be promptly returned and the client should be fully informed of the case at all times. Your attorney should have more than one avenue of communication such as telephone, fax, email, meetings, etc. Make sure you are comfortable with your lawyer. Did the lawyer answer all of your questions? Did you feel rushed? Did the attorney look you in the eye? Are they passionate about your cause? Will you be able to work with the lawyer? The best rule of thumb is to trust your instincts.
- Probate is a highly specialized field. Be cautious with the attorney whose practice includes multiple areas. Many attorneys practice probate law as a means of supplementing their income. You need an attorney who knows probate law so well that the attorney does not waste energy or time learning the law which may be costly and cause delays. You should be assured that the probate attorney has a sufficient team of lawyers and paralegals to address your specific needs.
Take the time to get to know the attorney.
The Probate Pro lives and breathes probate. Let our EXPERIENCE give you the edge.