Following the passing of a relative, Probate Attorney – All About Them Articles you may find it necessary to employ the services of a probate attorney. During this difficult time, this may not be the most appealing task; however, knowing what to look for will make the search much easier, and could possibly bring about better results than stumbling blindly through the process texas probate attorney.
The first thing you should do is determine what type of lawyer will best meet the needs of your situation. There are two main types of probate attorney: those who handle the administrative details of an estate, and those who represent clients in disputes regarding how the estate is to be parceled out among the deceased’s heirs and descendants. While it is possible to have one lawyer perform both tasks, the majority of those in the legal practice specialize in one area or the other.
Once you’ve determined what your needs are, you can begin your search for an attorney to assist you. Ask friends and other family members for references, or you can search online, or in the phone book. If possible, ask if you can speak with some of each candidate’s former clients. Find out if the probate attorney you have in mind represented them well? Were they satisfied with the service they received? Were there any concerns, and if so, how were they handled? When you’ve located several prospective candidates, look into their expertise regarding not only probate law, but other areas that may be connected, such as property law or estate planning. Find out if the lawyer you are considering is certified as a specialist in your state. Check with the state Bar Association to find out if they lawyer is currently in good standing, and check for membership in any state or national associations.
After you have narrowed your list of candidates down to one or two, try to arrange a time to meet briefly with those selected. Keep in mind, however, that members of the profession are quite busy, and may not be able to spend as much time sitting down with you as either of you would prefer. It is also not reasonable to expect a potential attorney to discuss your issue at length by phone.
Regardless, it should not take an excessive amount of time before your prospect is able to spare a reasonable amount of time to meet with you to discuss your situation. An extreme delay could be a sign that this candidate would be too busy to provide adequate attention to your situation. It’s also important to find out how long each candidate has been practicing his specialty. It may be helpful to ask other attorneys for their assessment of a candidate, as well.
When you finally select a probate attorney that is able to meet your needs, request a copy of his retainer agreement, and ask that it be explained in simplified terms, so that you are fully aware of what is involved in engaging his services. Also, ask to be introduced to the office staff, as a great deal of work will likely be delegated to them by the lawyer.
Observe how the staff treats you, as this is a fair reflection of the practice itself. While they may not always have the answers or information you need right away, everyone working there should always respond to you with courtesy and in a professional manner.