Legal Question in Legal Ethics in California

What subject areas should the attorney and client discuss during the initial consultation?

Asked on 1/04/15, 10:45 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Charles Perry Law Offices of Charles R. Perry

The word "should" troubles me a bit. I am going to respond by discussing what often happens in my own practice -- other attorneys may do it differently, but I cannot say that one system is better than another.

The attorney will normally gather information about the client and the nature of the problem. The attorney also will inquire about any other opposing or interested parties. At a minimum, this is to check for possible conflicts of interest. The attorney is likely to give an initial assessment of whether he or she is interested in or able to take on the matter, and may provide some initial advice. The attorney's fees will be discussed. The attorney will also try to answer as many of the client's questions as possible. If the case is big, initial thoughts on staffing may be addressed. Much depends, however, on the size of the matter and the firm.

Note that not all attorneys provide a free consultation. This is particularly true if the consultation is intended to provide substantial advice, or neither the attorney nor the client anticipates further work after the meeting.

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Answered on 1/04/15, 11:07 pm

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