How to Find a Good Lawyer

Knowing how to find a good lawyer is the first step toward winning your legal case.

Here’s how to find a good lawyer when you need one most.

How to Find a Good Lawyer

If you need help resolving a legal matter, you need to know how to find a good lawyer.

This is one of the most important steps to finding legal representation, as it could directly impact whether or not you win your legal case. As an attorney referral service, we have years of experience helping people find the best lawyer for their legal needs … and we’ve learned a thing or two over the years.

We’ve learned a lot over the years, so we gathered a few tips to help you better understand how to find a good lawyer when you need one most.

In this article, you’ll discover the importance of finding a lawyer with relevant experience, where to find a lawyer, and what questions you should ask.

Let’s take a look …

How to Find A Good Lawyer

If you’re like most people, you probably don’t have–or need–a lawyer on retainer.

That’s okay!

Most people start looking for a lawyer when they suspect they need one to resolve a potential legal matter. To help you get started, we gathered a few tips to help you get started and better understand how to find a good lawyer in the first place.

Here’s how to find a good lawyer:

  • Identify the type of lawyer you need
  • Contact your local bar association for qualified lawyers near you
  • Look for ratings and reviews for insight
  • Ask friends and family for recommendations
  • Make a list of lawyers you’re considering
  • Take a look at the lawyer’s website for more information regarding their experience
  • Consider the size of the firm if applicable
  • Make an appointment to discuss your legal matter with the lawyer
  • Ask questions during your initial consultation
  • Discuss the cost
  • Select the lawyer that stood out to you as the best option available.

Find a lawyer in Los Angeles

Identify the Type of Lawyer You Need

Lawyers tend to specialize in one of the main areas of law, so the first step to finding a good lawyer is identifying the type of lawyer you need.

If you experienced a personal injury, you should look for a personal injury attorney. If you were sexually harassed at work, look for a sexual harassment lawyer.

  • If you are struggling with finances, you might need a bankruptcy attorney.
  • For estate planning or creating a will or trust, look for an attorney who handles trusts and estates.
  • If you were disabled at work, look for an attorney who handles Social Security Disability (SSD) and Personal Personal injury attorneys can also help with cases involving car accidents, dog bites, medical malpractice or other injuries caused by someone else.
  • If you need assistance with divorce, child custody, adoption, guardianship, pre- or post-nuptial agreements, look for an attorney who handles family law.
  • If you are charged with a crime, you may be facing large fines or prison, and you should seek the help of a criminal lawyer who has tried cases like yours.
  • If you feel you were fired because of age, sexual preference, or because you complained about unsafe conditions – or any of several other protected classes of employment – you should seek an employment law
  • If you want help with a corporate merger or are starting a business, look for a corporate attorney.

Where to Find A Good Lawyer

Once you have determined the area of law you need help with, you should start looking for an attorney with that specialty. Start by contacting the San Fernando Valley Bar Association to learn more about the qualified lawyers in the area.

If you want to find a good lawyer fast, consider contacting your local Attorney Referral Service.

As an Attorney Referral Service in San Fernando Valley, we work closely with a variety of lawyers who specialize in the various areas of law and ensure they are all qualified and in good standing. We understand how overwhelming it can feel when you need to find a good lawyer, which is why we’re dedicated to making it as easy as possible for you.

All you have to do is tell us a little about your legal matter and we’ll match you with the best lawyer for your needs.

To top it off, we’ll even help you get a free 30-minute consultation so you have a chance to discuss your legal issue with the lawyer in person.

Find a lawyer in Los Angeles


Ask Questions During Your Consultation

If you come up with one or two possible lawyers, be prepared to meet with them and set up a consultation. But first, ask if the consultation is free or if there is a charge,

You already have some information that you found online. But now you want to ask questions that are relevant to your own case. Ask about how the attorney will charge for his or her service. Will it be by the hour or on a contingency basis? Or is it a flat fee (which is often used for family law)?

A contingency arrangement means the lawyer will take on the financial risk of your case and will not collect legal fees from you unless he or she recovers money for you. Your attorney will receive a percentage of the settlement amount, typically 30 to 40 percent.

In addition to cost, ask the attorney about time. How long might your case take – before going to court and the length of the court process? It would be just an estimate, but it should be based on previous experience with cases similar to yours.

When can the lawyer begin to work with you? Is he working on other cases right now? Will he/she be your primary contact throughout the legal process or will you be turned over to a junior associate to handle much of the work? And who exactly will represent you in court if needed?

You can also ask about the success rate in previous cases. What is this attorney’s track record in winning cases or getting satisfactory settlements? Ask for references from previous clients who were happy with the service of this firm.

Once you and your attorney agree on how your case should be handled, you both sign a letter of engagement stating the terms of the agreement, and you are ready to go.

19 replies
  1. Ellie Davis says:

    Thank you for pointing out that you need to identify what kind of lawyer you need. My husband was injured by his pressure cooker. I”ll have to look into finding the best lawyer for this situation.

    • SFVBA Attorney Referral Service says:


      So sorry to hear about your husband’s injury. We can help you find the best lawyer for personal injuries and set up a free consultation – all you have to do is complete an to get started.

  2. Brooklyn Johnson says:

    I like how you mentioned how you can contact your local attorney referral service if you need help finding a good lawyer. My brother is having a problem with his finances and thinks he will need to hire a lawyer. I will definitely pass along these great tips on how to find a good lawyer to my brother!

  3. Arianna Jones says:

    It’s great you mentioned where I can look for a lawyer’s services, even if I would just want to go in for a consultation about something that would need a legal eye to check over to see if it’s verified and accurate. Looking for a lawyer that would deal with the specific service you need is a good idea since you would want to make sure that you’re hiring the right kind of lawyer to help you out with whatever services you would need. If I had the chance to hire a lawyer then I would want to make sure that I would find the right one for my concern.

  4. Tyler Johnson says:

    That’s a good idea to make a list of potential lawyers. That way as you do more research you could cross off options until you find the best one. It would be nice to be able to compare all of the options and their benefits all in one place as well.

  5. Rosie Beckett says:

    My brother needs to find a trial lawyer and this is something he has never done before, so he asked me to help. I really like the list of questions you say to ask potential lawyers about their success rate and pricing. This way my brother and I can compare their prices and the quality of their services before choosing an attorney.

  6. Steele Honda says:

    Thanks for pointing out that it can be smart to ask your attorney how long might your case take – before going to court and the length of the court process. I am thinking about getting a personal injury attorney because I was injured in a car accident recently and the insurance is being very difficult to work with. I think that knowing the timeframe would help me plan everything our better and so would be smart to talk to my attorney about.

  7. Millie Hue says:

    I totally agree when you said that people would usually need a lawyer when they are in a situation that would need legal help. That is the actual reason why we are looking for one right now. This is because of the questions we have due to what is happening to our company. We are just new here, so we are not regulars yet which is their reason that is why they would have to end our contract first even if we will be transferring to a new department already.

  8. Katie Wilson says:

    Thanks for these tips on how to find a good defense lawyer. It would make sense to find someone who is the right type of lawyer with experience and qualifications, as you suggest. My husband and I are looking for a defense lawyer, so we’ll have to check their qualifications first.

    • SFVBA Attorney Referral Service says:

      Finding the right lawyer can make all the difference, Katie. Thanks for reading.

  9. Angela Waterford says:

    I think an attorney-at-law can help me resolve some legal disputes I have with my neighbor. Thanks for telling me that I have to identify the type of lawyer I need before I hire one. This way, contacting the local bar association will be a faster process for me once I’m done deciding on which kind of attorney I should go for.

  10. Stefan Bradley says:

    I didn’t think about asking friends and family for lawyer recommendations, I never realized that there was more than one way to find an experienced lawyer who can help. My brother has been looking for a criminal lawyer and has been very stressed and confused about the process, he isn’t quite sure where to look. Hopefully, we can ask some people close to us for recommendations, I’m sure he would feel more confident in his lawyer if he was suggested by one of his friends.

    • SFVBA Attorney Referral Service says:


      Your local bar association is one of the best places to start your search. If you’re in the Los Angeles area, we may be able to set up a free consultation for you.

      To get started, tell us a little more about the situation here.

  11. Johan says:

    Thanks for sharing great information. Finding a good lawyer may be the most important step you can take toward winning a legal case and it doesn’t have to be a difficult task. You will, however, need to take your time with the search. Focus your efforts on finding a lawyer that has dealt with your specific legal issue in the past and that you get along with personally.

  12. Sandra Patterson says:

    Thank you fro the tip about asking questions that are relevant to your personal case. My sister has been thinking about getting a professional to help her with her husband’s parents’ personal case that is going on. I will be sure to send this to him so she will be able to help them choose a good lawyer.


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