The selection of an attorney is a serious matter and the attorney you choose can make a big difference in your case. Choosing the right attorney requires a thorough evaluation.

One of the best ways to evaluate an attorney is to get a personal referral. Ask family, friends, colleagues and business associates for recommendations.

1. Reputation

When choosing a lawyer, reputation is an important consideration. Clients are more likely to trust attorneys who have positive online reviews and a good track record of client satisfaction. This is why it’s important for lawyers to manage their online reputation and ensure their Google Business Profile page contains up-to-date information, including client ratings and reviews.

Attorneys should also make sure they are listed on legal directories and review websites, such as Avvo, Martindale-Hubbell, and Super Lawyers. These sites allow clients to see their reviews and background, as well as any disciplinary records that may be available.

To be rated by Martindale-Hubbell, lawyers must have been endorsed by a minimum of two other licensed attorneys who can attest to their professional ethical standards and legal ability. Avvo is a free service that allows users to search for law firms and attorneys, read client reviews, and learn more about the firm. It also provides information on state bar associations and disciplinary history.

Avvo also has a lawyer rating system that is based on public feedback. This rating is based on a number of factors, including years in practice, education, training, and case results. Attorneys can improve their Avvo ratings by responding to client reviews and updating their bios. They can also participate in the Avvo Legal Match program, which connects clients with lawyers who specialize in their legal issues. This is a great way to build trust with potential clients and increase the likelihood of winning new cases. Lawyers should also encourage their satisfied clients to leave online reviews on sites such as Google Reviews, Yelp, and Facebook. These online reviews are an excellent way to showcase an attorney’s track record of client success and help them stand out from their competitors.

2. Experience

When choosing an attorney, experience is one of the most important factors. An experienced lawyer will have the knowledge and confidence to handle your case effectively. They will also know how to navigate the complex legal process and avoid costly mistakes that could otherwise delay your case or reduce the outcome of your case.

While an attorney’s number of cases handled can be a good indicator of their experience, it is not the only factor to consider. You should look at the type of cases they have handled, as well as their outcomes. In addition, you should also consider whether the cases they have handled are similar to yours. For example, if you have a business matter, you will want to choose an attorney who has experience representing businesses similar to yours.

It is also important to consider an attorney’s level of experience in private practice. You should ask the attorneys you are considering for a list of clients and their contact information. You can then call these clients to ask about their experience working with the attorney. This is a great way to get an honest assessment of an attorney’s ability.

Another great source of information is to visit the website of your state bar association. Many of these websites provide lists of attorneys by specialty. You can also find consumer reviews on these sites, which can be a useful guide in making your choice.

Finally, you should always meet an attorney before hiring them. Many attorneys will offer a free consultation, so you can see if they are a good fit for your needs. During this meeting, pay attention to the personality of the attorney and how comfortable you feel talking with them.

3. Fees

Whether you’re hiring an attorney for business or family legal matters, it’s important to find someone who charges reasonable rates. This may seem obvious, but the fact is that many lawyers are not transparent about their fees or have hidden costs. This can add up quickly, so it’s important to ask about fee structures and billing arrangements before making a final decision.

One way to evaluate the affordability of an attorney is by looking at the attorney’s BBB rating. The Better Business Bureau (BBB) gives attorneys ratings based on how well they meet certain standards in customer service and how promptly they respond to complaints. A higher rating indicates that the law firm meets these standards, while a lower rating means they do not.

Another option is to look at the attorney’s Martindale-Hubbell rating. This rating is based on peer review, meaning that other attorneys rate the lawyer’s ability and ethical standards. The highest rating is A, while the lowest is F.

You can also find out more about the quality of an attorney by reviewing their Super Lawyers profile. This rating is based on a patented multiphase selection process that includes peer nomination and evaluation as well as independent research. Attorneys are evaluated on 12 indicators of peer recognition and professional achievement. Super Lawyers selects attorneys from more than 70 practice areas and every state and territory in the United States.

To enhance your Super Lawyers profile, make sure you’re filling out all the fields on your attorney profile. This will help potential clients get the information they need to make a decision about working with you. You can also direct your previous clients to the “Write a Review” button on your profile to encourage them to share their experiences.

4. Recommendations

When you choose to hire any service provider, including an attorney, recommendations are a good place to start. Asking family members, friends, and business associates for recommendations can help you compile a list of potential candidates. Once you have your list, take a few minutes to check their attorney profiles on FindLaw and Google them. This will provide insight into the breadth of their practice and their level of expertise in your specific legal needs.

In addition, you may want to consider the attorney’s educational background. As a general rule, attorneys who graduated near the top of their law school class are likely to be better attorneys than those who were close to the bottom of their law school class. You also might want to inquire whether the lawyer has any book awards or served on the law review.

You can also get attorney ratings from Martindale-Hubbell, one of the most established and reputable lawyer rating services in the United States. This rating system assigns an A, B, C, or no rating to lawyers and is based on evaluations from clients and other legal professionals.

Another highly regarded lawyer rating website is Avvo, which rates attorneys on both their legal skills and ethical standards. Lawyers with an Avvo rating of 5.0 or higher are considered very skilled and ethical, while those with a 10.0 are rated as the best in their field.

Lastly, you may want to consider whether the attorney is active in your community or has a professional association with groups that share your interests. This can provide an opportunity to connect with other attorneys who share your passion for the law and may lead to new client referrals in the future.

5. Reviews

The internet has made consumer review websites a common part of the research process for all kinds of products and services. Lawyers are no exception, and potential clients often use attorney review sites to find out more about the law firm they are considering.

Lawyers and law firms can help improve their ratings on these review sites by providing useful and accurate information about their services on their profile. In addition, making it easy for past clients to leave reviews is important. This can be done by enabling client feedback via a lawyer’s website, or through an app like Podium that automates review invites and makes it easy for lawyers to manage their reputation across different review sites.

Attorney directories are also a good source of information about attorneys. For example, Avvo is a well-respected site that gives potential clients an in-depth look at the professional backgrounds of attorneys and offers a rating system based on client reviews. Lawyers can improve their Avvo ranking by ensuring that all relevant information is on their profile and that they update it regularly.

Another well-known attorney directory is Martindale, which ranks attorneys based on peer evaluations. The ranking system uses a number of factors, including whether the attorney graduated at the top of their class, received any book awards, or served on law review, as well as the amount of experience they have in their practice area. Attorneys who are rated highly by peers are invited to be considered for inclusion in the list of Top Rated Attorneys.

While there are many ways to evaluate a lawyer, a combination of these factors can provide the best chance for finding a top-rated attorney. By choosing a lawyer who has been recommended by friends or family, is experienced in the type of case you need representation for, has affordable fees and reasonable rates, and has positive reviews on online attorney review sites, you can be sure to get the legal services that you deserve.