Q : What Will Happen at the Consultation?
A : This is a time for the attorney and the potential new client to get to know one another. This meeting will likely be to do just that. You can expect for the attorney to:
- Give you some background information about the firm;
- Ask you questions about your background (i.e. Where you work, How many children you have, Where you're from, etc.);
- Provide you with a game-plan for your case (if you retained the attorney);
- Provide you with information regarding how the firm would handle your specific case;
- Provide you with a copy of the employment contract between you and the attorney (The Contract is signed after the fees are paid);
- Review the fees for the attorney's service; and
- Plus, the attorney will answer any outstanding questions that you may have.
Q : May I bring my Children to the Consultation With Me?
A : The answer to this question is generally, 'no'. Since this is a time for you and the attorney to speak about serious matters, it is important that there are no distractions. Moreover, if the children are of age, it may be harmful for them to be in the room; courts typically discourage children being involved with the specifics of the law suit. Your children may be able to accompany you but it will depend on :
- Whether or not you obtained express permission from the attorney to bring your children with you beforehand;
- The age of the children;
- The maturity of the children;
- If you will bring an adult to supervise the children during the meeting; and
- Whether or not the children will wait in the waiting area for you or not.
Q : What About Friends or Family Members? May I Bring Them?
A : The answer to this question is generally, 'no'. I understand that going through litigation is tough so it is understandable that you'd like a family member or friend to come with you for support. However, since this is a time for you and the attorney to speak about serious (and private) matters, it is important that there are no non-parties present. If they are present, you could destroy attorney-client privilege without even knowing it. Your Friends or Family Member may be able to accompany you but it will depend on :
- Whether or not you obtained express permission from the attorney to bring your them with you beforehand;
- If their attendance is necessary due to a language barrier or not; and
- If you agree to have the person attend the meeting (in writing) prior to the meeting
Q : Should I Bring Anything With Me to the Consultation?
A : Yes. You'll want to bring any information that would be helpful to your case (along with anything specifically requested by the attorney). Here are some of the documents that you should bring with you as well as some of the information you should be prepared to provide:
- A form of photo identification (ID, Driver's License, Passport, etc.);
- A copy of health insurance cards, social security cards for children, etc.;
- Paper/Tablet (You'll want to take notes);
- Proof and/or amount of Income (W-2, Tax Returns, Pay Stubs);
- List of Assets & Debts (Divorces);
- Date of Marriage & Separation (Divorces);
- Address Where the Other Party Can be Served;
- Information regarding the other party's Employer, salary, etc.
- Money Order, Check, Cashier's Check, Cash, or Credit/Debit Card to pay Retainer and/or filing fees (If you hire the attorney)
Q : Can I Re-Schedule My Appointment? What About Canceling it All Together?
A : Yes. You can re-schedule your appointment any time prior to your scheduled meeting. We will try to accommodate your schedule as much as we can. Typically if you'd like to re-schedule (due to an emergency) we will try to re-schedule you for the soonest available time that works for you and the attorney. Your consultation fee will not be refunded to you in the event of a re-scheduled appointment.
A : We'd hate to see you cancel but, yes. You can cancel your appointment any time prior to your scheduled meeting. However, please be aware that any cancellations made within 4 hours of your scheduled meeting, will result in a forfeiture of your consultation fee.