Paying for the services of a lawyer can be a pricey expenditure. But when a citizen needs legal representative, he or she may feel that there is no choice but to pay the bill or suffer the consequences. Having competent legal advice is crucial when dealing with the law and court system. Getting wrong advice or trying to represent yourself when you have no idea what you’re doing is a bad idea.
The court system is a complicated maze for even the most savvy professional. The average Joe or Jane Citizen can be well over his or her head if he or she takes on the law alone. There are ways around the steep costs, however. Even the most limited budget can stretch to accommodate some of these options.
Legal aid services are designed to help individuals with limited incomes. Volunteers staff the agencies to help the average financially strapped citizen deal with legalities, which are troubling them. Attorneys and paralegals are available to answer questions, fill out paperwork and even appear in court. Some organizations are designed to help certain groups such as senior citizens, children or single mothers.
While there are individuals who are in the poverty range who need help, there are also some in the middle class who can just barely pay their mortgages and food bills but have nothing left over to pay for a private law firm. These -in-between- income groups can be helped by organizations catering to those who need sliding scale fees.
Some cases are tried on a contingency basis so no fees are payable unless a case is settled. When a trial is over and settlement reached, the lawyer takes a percentage, which has been agreed upon at the onset. The most common types of cases taken on contingency basis include personal injury, malpractice or accident cases.
Court appointed attorneys are assigned to citizens who are being tried for a crime if they don’t have a private attorney. These representatives are called public defenders. It is the right of every citizen to have legal representation in criminal cases.
Some law practices offer their services for just an hour at a time. Don’t need a full time legal representative, but just some advice to get you on your way? An hour of time to obtain advice and guidance can be worth its weight in gold.
Paralegal representatives may be able to help citizens at a lower cost than a full-fledged attorney would charge. Paralegals have received extensive schooling in order to learn the ins and outs of the law. They are often well acquainted with basic procedures and can answer questions as well.
Legal kits to do-it-yourself can be obtained for an array of needs. DIY divorce kits, wills, incorporating a business and more can be purchased and completed by an average citizen. For a person who needs legal representation but can’t afford to hire a full priced lawyer, there are definitely options available. Where there’s a will there’s a way.