Lawyers Online: Everything You Need To Know

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Why Hire Lawyers Online?

There has never been a better time to consider hiring lawyers online rather than in person. Here is a look at some situations in which you may want to hire an online lawyer:

  • Disability: If leaving your home is physically challenging for you due to a disability, it's not worth the risk you pose to your health by meeting with an attorney in person. Instead, you can consult with a lawyer from the comfort of your home.
  • No child care: Too often, parents are left to choose between getting the proper legal aid they need and caring for their children. Finding affordable childcare can be a challenge for many families, especially if you're already concerned with your legal issues. A virtual meeting with a lawyer may be your safest option.
  • No transportation: If you rely on public transit, getting to an attorney can be a challenge in and of itself, depending on where you live and what your schedule is like. A virtual meeting can help you get the legal aid you need without taking up the majority of your day or derailing your entire schedule.

What Are the Advantages of Hiring Lawyers Online?

Hiring lawyers online comes with several advantages that many people may not think about. Here are a few examples of the benefits of hiring lawyers online rather than in person:

  • Complete transparency: By communicating online with your lawyer, you will always have a document to refer to if you have any questions in the future. Very often, discussing legal options with a lawyer can be overwhelming. After leaving your meeting, you might even forget what you discussed. With a digital trail, you can always refer back to your documents to verify what your lawyer recommended and their reasoning for doing so.
  • Time savings: If you work a lot or are a single parent — or both — it may be challenging for you to find the time in your day to get to a meeting with a lawyer. A virtual meeting will save you and your lawyer transit time. This way, you focus your time on solving your legal issues instead of figuring out how to rework your entire day to make the meeting work.
  • Struggles with mental illness: If you have a mental illness like depression or anxiety, you know that leaving your home can be an enormous feat. Removing the emotional stress of meeting in person can allow people with these conditions to avoid scenarios that otherwise could have prevented them from seeking out counsel in the first place.

What Are the Qualifications of Lawyers Online?

An online lawyer is no different from an attorney you meet in person. They are still required by their state to be certified to practice law. The only difference is that they offer their services online, but this has no bearing on their educational background or ability to counsel you well. It is up to you to complete your due diligence and seek out the best representative for your needs, just like you would with an in-person attorney.

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How Do You Hire a Lawyer Online?

The best way to hire a lawyer online is to review different lawyers in your area and decide which ones you think would be best for your specific situation. Once you've narrowed it down, schedule a virtual consultation with each possible lawyer by emailing or calling them to ask for a meeting. In this consultation, you can ask questions to ensure that you hire the best representative for your case. Here are some questions you should consider asking when meeting with an attorney online:

  • How many years of experience do you have in this area of the law?
  • Have you handled cases like mine before?
  • Do you have clients similar to me or my business?
  • What types of clients do you work with mainly?
  • What are your typical fees?
  • Will you be leaving my case to a paralegal or legal assistant, or will you be handling this case yourself?
  • Will you keep me in the loop as progress is made on my case, and if so, how often should I expect to hear from you?
  • Are you able to guarantee security throughout our online relationship?

If you meet with more than one attorney, see who makes you feel the most confident and comfortable based on their answers. Before scheduling an appointment, do a little research into the lawyer you are about to contact and make sure their background is compatible with your case needs. This can save you a lot of time in the long run.

Take a look at this website for resources to help you find a lawyer online.

Challenges of the Law Online and How to Resolve Them

Going virtual with a lawyer can be done safely and securely as long as you and your lawyer are aware of the challenges of getting legal counsel online. Here are some common challenges that come up with hiring lawyers online and what you can do to ensure you don't fall victim to them:

  • Confidentiality: The internet is not always a safe space. Confidentiality remains the most important part of your client-lawyer relationship. While you may communicate by email or through a virtual meeting, at no point should any legal information be shared via social media or any other insecure network. Your attorney should be well aware of this and take the necessary steps to ensure your safety and security. If an attorney ever asks for your personal information via a social channel, decline the request and insist on email instead.
  • Jurisdiction: Your location and your lawyer's location play a vital role in their ability to represent you. Before you move forward with a lawyer or submit payment, be sure your lawyer is advised of your exact location and the locations that may be related to your case. To learn more about legal challenges concerning jurisdiction, read this article .
  • Social media legal advice: While a lawyer may advertise their services online, they are required to follow strict solicitation and advertisement laws by including a disclaimer. However, it is increasingly difficult to do so in a Twitter post or Facebook comment. Lawyers may offer examples of legal counsel online, but this should not be taken as legal advice. Every situation is different. To ensure that you are getting proper legal counsel for your case, meet with the lawyer to discuss your specific situation. What you see online is an example, not free advice you should follow.

The Bottom Line

In essence, hiring lawyers online isn't much different from hiring them in person. However, though there are many conveniences, at no time should an unqualified person offer you legal advice. A proper attorney is licensed to practice law and simply offers a virtual option. In today's day and age, virtual meetings are increasingly important. To ensure you go through the process safely and securely, stick to the rules outlined above, and make sure you are comfortable with your attorney before you hire them.

To find an online attorney to represent you, click here.

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