November 23, 2020
Whilst to a large extent your experience of engaging with a solicitor will be dependent on the individual solicitor or the firm involved, there are a number of things that you can do which will help ensure that your experience is positive and that you get as much out of it as you can.
Siobhan Williams shares some tips for business owners to help ensure that you get the best out of your solicitor:
Find a solicitor that you can relate to and who genuinely understands you and your business. Ideally find someone who has undertaken the same type of work before.
If you have engaged a solicitor to advise you on a particular matter, ask for their advice before making any significant decisions or speaking with third parties. There’s no point in engaging a solicitor and not using them before you make key decisions. If you do not consult with your solicitor before making crucial decisions then you may end up in difficulty legally.
Be clear as to what resources you have for legal costs. It is sometimes possible to agree fixed fees for specific pieces of work, however other matters are usually chargeable by the hour. Have an upfront honest discussion with your solicitor as to what costs are likely to be for your particular matter. Your solicitor will give you estimates at various stages of your matter, but these estimates are based on the information available to them at the time. If things change, or something unexpected crops up, the fee estimate is likely to be revised and you should be prepared for this.
It is important for you to assess how important your particular matter is to you. You should always carry out a costs/benefit analysis when instructing a solicitor to make sure that you do not end up spending a fortune in legal fees on something that does not have much value commercially. Similarly, it is worth investing in areas which are likely to protect your business’ position in the future, or if it will yield savings elsewhere. Remember that if your matter is particularly urgent, the fees may be subject to an uplift, so take advice in good time where possible.
Make sure you give your solicitor all relevant information and papers. Depending on the matter involved, it might be useful to put together a short narrative or chronology setting out what happened when, attaching all relevant documents. The more you can package up the important information, the easier your solicitor’s task will be.
Be clear about any deadlines you have for the work, and have a discussion with your solicitor as to whether the deadline is realistic / achievable.
Read what your solicitor sends you. It is important that you read thoroughly and understand the documents and advice that your solicitor sends you. Your solicitor will have spent a good deal of time carefully crafting advice and documents and it is important that you familiarise yourself with what is in them, otherwise you may miss crucial information. If you don’t understand something, then ask for further clarity. It is important that you understand the advice you are being given so you can make an informed decision as to what steps to take next.
Make sure that your expectations are realistic. Depending on the issue you are facing, there might not be a quick or easy solution. You need to ensure that you keep a level head and realistic approach.
Be patient. Regardless of the nature of the matter, there is likely a process to follow and take its course.
At Darwin Gray, our personal approach means that we’re always just a phone call or email away for our clients. Our teams work closely together, so you’ll have the right person for your case and a wealth of expertise and experience at hand as your needs change.
I have worked with Darwin Gray for a number of years and the level of service, professionalism and timely response is second to none. I would highly recommend Darwin Gray to any business.”
Darwin Gray have provided us with a first-class service for many years now. They really take the time to understand our business and develop relationships which results in advice and support that is contextualised and effective.”
We have worked with Darwin Gray for several years and have always found their services and advice to be first class.”
An extremely professional and sincere company who make time for your queries and understand the need to break down certain facts and information to ensure everything is understood perfectly. I would highly recommend the company to anyone looking for any type of legal advice”
PSS has worked with Darwin Gray for many years. We have always received an excellent service. Prompt and professional advice and support.”
We have used several departments within DG recently and we have been very pleased with an effective, efficient and down to earth service. Very happy thus far and I expect that we will continue to use DG.”
Darwin Gray offer us truly superb services. Very professional, quick and services available bilingually which is very important to us, highly recommend.”
My “go to” in urgent and time sensitive cases for direction, support and advice. The team are quick to respond to calls or emails for advice and support on all matters. Always explain complex matters in a way a lay person can easily understand.”