Finding the right mediator or attorney to assist you is one of the most critical aspects of the entire mediation or litigation process. Here are three easy steps to help ensure that you choose the right professional(s) for you.
1). Do your research. When you begin your search for mediators or attorneys, look beyond geographical convenience. Your goal is to find a professional that you feel comfortable with, that you trust, and that you feel confident will be able to assist you. Whether you have to drive an additional ten or so minutes to meet the person at his or her office is irrelevant, so be sure not to pick someone simply because they are easier to get to. Come up with a list of 3 to 5 names that you feel have the requisite experience that you are looking for. Be sure to keep an eye out for attorneys and mediators who are actively involved in their legal or mediation communities. Community involvement may indicate that a professional is easy to work with and truly enjoys and takes pride in his or her field of work.
2). Conduct Interviews. Once you have come up with your list, you need to contact each professional and set up a time to meet them for an initial consultation at their office. Take note of how easy it is to set up a consultation. Do they seem willing to work with you or are you being treated like they are doing you a favor by agreeing to meet with you? Only meet with people that make you feel important – because you are. Next, when meeting with the lawyer or mediator, try to get a feel for that person’s personality. Do you feel a good chemistry and bond forming or are you feeling unheard, misunderstood and like you can’t get a word in? There isn’t enough experience in the world that is worth entering into a relationship where you feel uncomfortable from the start. Listen to your instincts and pick the professional that best suits you.
3). Review the retainer or agreement to mediate. Once you have found someone you feel comfortable with and can trust, review the retainer or agreement to mediate before signing. If you have any questions or concerns, don’t be afraid to ask for clarification.
Now that you have done your homework, you can rest assured that you have found the right person to help you through your problem. For more information about finding the right attorney or mediator, or to set up a time for a complimentary initial consultation, feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Shazi Rastegar, Esq. – Attorney and Mediator
Please note that this blog is intended for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as legal advice.