Why Phone Consultations Are a Bad Idea
It is very likely that sometime during your life, you will need to use the advice and perhaps the representation of an attorney. For many years the Yellow Pages were where you would look for an attorney in your community along with asking for suggestions from family and friends. Not any more. Today the way to look for an attorney involves not only asking family and friends but using the internet and researching several websites. Once you have narrowed your search to, say, three possibilities, you will want to arrange a consultation for the final comparison. Attorneys will offer an initial consultation either in the office or on the phone. Some attorneys offer the initial consultation for free, which makes it nice. Free or not, a consultation should accomplish several things, including:
- Answering general questions such as the steps required to obtain a divorce or how to file for bankruptcy, or how to get child support.
- Discussing the fee schedule
- Learning how the attorney handles communication, i.e., phone, email, texting
- Getting to know the attorney personally
One of the newer concepts in providing a consultation is to do the consultation over the phone rather than in the attorney’s office. While this may be more convenient, especially if transportation is a problem or the prospective client is in a hurry to retain legal help, there are several reasons why phone consultations are a bad idea. Consider the following reasons why meeting in person will usually generate a better client-attorney relationship and a higher level of client satisfaction.
- Getting to personally know another person through visual contact and conversation will enhance the feeling of trust and caring. Clients want to feel understood by their attorney and that the attorney has empathy for their situation.
- Body language plays a big part in developing a solid attorney-client relationship.
- Information such as steps for a divorce, fee schedules, communication guidelines, and the attorney’s client requirements and expectations can be given to the prospective client in writing to take home. Many people like to think things over, and written information helps gives them this chance.
- Visuals such as office décor, framed diplomas, interesting pictures, and a scrapbook of successes can create a positive influence.
- Especially if the initial consultation is free, the prospective client will feel that the attorney is truly interested in what they are saying and what they need.
- An in-person consultation can help make the prospective client feel special, and their needs understood.
- Smiles and handshakes mean more to the successful handling of a case than most anything else, and these cannot be delivered over the phone. This is especially true if the case is emotional such as divorce or child custody.
If you are looking for a Family Law attorney who offers a free, initial, in-office consultations and you live in Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie, Miami-Dade, Broward, Orange, or Hillsborough County in Florida, or New York or Washington DC, Attorney Grant Gisondo will meet with you. He is a board-certified Marital and Family Law lawyer who has been successfully practicing for over a decade. You can call his office at (561) 530-4568 to make an appointment. Attorney Gisondo’s office hours are Monday through Friday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and for new clients on Saturday from 8:30 AM to 1:00 PM.