Are you looking to hire a commercial litigation attorney? How do you choose the best one? Read this guide to find out how to find the best one.
With 1.34 million attorneys in the United States, it might seem like an impossible task to find the right attorney for your commercial litigation needs.
In order to help you find the right one, we’ve put together this useful guide. You’re one step away.
The Needs of Your Business
Before you hire a commercial litigation attorney, you need to establish the needs of your business. How much will it affect your business if you don’t get the right attorney?
Not all commercial litigation attorneys specialize in every industry. Some commercial litigation attorneys specialize in oil and gas entities, manufacturing companies, holding companies, construction companies, and more.
Most likely it would affect your business if you don’t get an attorney in the specific area of litigation you need.
Similar Litigation Experience
Before you consider hiring a commercial litigation attorney, you should make sure they will be comfortable handling a case like yours.
Learning about their litigation experience is very important to determine whether they will be able to tackle your case in a top gun manner.
When you meet with any potential commercial litigation attorneys, be certain to ask them if they’ve handled many cases similar to yours. You may also want to ask them about the outcome of each case and their strategy.
They should be happy to answer any questions you might have about their prior cases.
Qualifications in Area of Expertise
Remember, not every practicing attorney goes into the same practice area.
Every attorney has a different background and area of expertise. When you’re looking for a commercial litigation attorney, you have to pick the one with a strong background in this area.
When you start researching for a commercial litigation attorney, pay attention to the attorney’s biographies. What are their areas of expertise?
Most of them note all their areas of expertise in their biographies, so you can pay attention to that.
Qualified attorneys will also have available in their biography additional information about their credentials aside from education. Look on their website for a full biography with a list of published cases, speaking engagements and more.
Let the Numbers Speak
If you want to find the best litigation attorney, you need to look at their successes. Successful attorneys in their fields such as Mark Alexander have a list of notable victories.
Some attorneys often disclose the amounts of their successful settlement wins. If they don’t have them displayed on their website, you can ask to see some of their numbers.
An example of this would be a brief case description with the settlement amount in favor of their client.
Looking at their wins will let you know how hard they’re willing to work for their clients.
Most importantly, every fee agreement should be in writing!
Since every case is different no lawyer can guarantee you the overall cost of any case. However, you should find out how they break down their fees, so you can understand the billing process and what you expect.
Most commercial litigation attorneys charge on an hourly basis. If this is the case, the attorney will keep track of their time. Then, they multiply the time they spent working on a task by their hourly rate. Likely the client will be charged for paralegal time and expenses such as deposition, court and expert fees, to name a few.
Some attorneys work under a flat rate, which is agreed upon up front. Most of the time a flat rate is mainly for specific tasks such as drafting a contract. And rarely will you see a flat rate in commercial litigation.
Contingency fee agreements are not common in litigation cases. A contingency fee is simply an agreed-upon percentage of the money, paid to the lawyer out of the total money paid to the winning party in a case. When the lawyer settles and/or wins your case, they will receive an agreed-upon percentage from the funds as payment for their attorney’s fees. The percentage often varies between 20 to 40 percent. In most matters, the client pays the expenses related to the case. However, if the case is lost, usually the client is not responsible for attorney’s fees.
Look at the Court Records
There are quite a few public court records. You can view many of the courts’ websites and databases to look for information on cases, which may be similar to yours.
If you decide to do this, you can search for your attorney’s name or the type of case in the database.
With commercial litigation attorneys, you should see at least a few cases listed. Don’t worry if you don’t see many cases–good lawyers like to settle before going to court.
Pay Attention to Communication
Although an attorney might be qualified and experienced, you have to make sure it will be the right fit.
Pay attention to how the attorney communicates with you. Does the attorney show interest in answering all your questions?
Do you feel comfortable with reaching out and openly talking to the attorney about your concerns?
Ask, if he/she is hired, what time frame he/she has established when it comes to responding to your questions during the litigation.
For the working relationship to be successful, you have to feel like you can communicate well.
Finding the Best Commercial Litigation Lawyer: The Bottom Line
Next time you need a commercial litigation attorney you will know what to look for. Make sure the attorney: (1) understands the needs of your business; (2) has the right experience in your case; (3) clearly explains his/her fees; and (4) that you can effectively communicate with the attorney.
Are you in the State of Texas and in need of a commercial litigation attorney? Let Mark Alexander help you. Contact us today.