It seems like a lot of people want to know how to save money with a lawyer. If you are involved in a family dispute, or a divorce in Illinois, you probably want to know how to decrease the costs of litigation.
Whether you have one of the best divorce lawyers in Illinois, very expensive divorce lawyer, or a relatively affordable divorce lawyer, you probably want to know how to spend less money on your lawyer about getting the same result in your case.
Hiring an Illinois family law attorney is no easy task. Obviously, you want to hire an attorney that is best for you. To address that I wrote the article “Who is the best divorce attorney in Chicago?”
But there are other things you can do to make better use of your financial resources.
Use an attorney that leverages technology
While here are numerous factors that can make some one of the best attorney for you, one of it overlooks factor is the attorneys use of technology.
Let me explain to you how I use some technology. I use secure online storage to their clients can have easy access to the document. Then also enables them to easily send me documents. Further, I make extensive use of email, some attorneys do not. I use email extensively with communicating with my clients, and with opposing counsel. That saves a lot of money that would otherwise be wasted on the expense of postage and the time involved in mailing hard copy communication.
I ran across one attorney who did an excellent job leveraging technology for the benefit of her client. Chicago divorce lawyer Marie Fahnert received permission from a judge to conduct a hearing via Skype. In that case, the man was bed-ridden, and the attorney’s use of technology was key to the success of his case. While your case may not be that extreme, Attorney Fahnert’s case does illustrate the important role played by an attorney’s creative and effective use of technology.
Avoid unnecessary communication
One of the biggest wastes of time and money is creating unnecessary communication. Divorce and child custody disputes can be very stressful. But you should be careful not to use your lawyer as a therapist. First of all, lawyers do not tend to be good therapist.
You will also want to be careful not to flood an attorney with unnecessary communication about the facts of a case. In divorce and child custody cases, some facts are relevant to the proceeding, and some facts are not. Your lawyer should help you understand what facts are relevant. If you flood an attorney with too many irrelevant facts, you are likely to waste money and to distract from the more meaningful facts.
Organize your evidence
As an Illinois divorce lawyer, one of the most time-consuming aspects of my job is to organize my clients’ testimony and evidence. Here are a few tips you can use to keep your communication organized:
- Use email efficiently: Don’t send 10 emails a day, unless there is an emergency. It is much better to have one email with clearly delineated topics. Using bullet-points can help keep your emails organized.
- Label evidence effectively: I normally coach my clients how to keep their evidence organized. When clients send me their evidence in an organized fashion, that’s less time I have to spend organizing the client’s evidence. And that saves the client’s money.
Can your lawyer explain technology
The use of technology is one of the major drivers in attorney efficiency. But how can you determine how well your attorney utilizes technology? Most likely, at attorney would not just up and admit “I have no idea how to make use of technology, therefore our communication will be slow and your bill will be 10 percent higher.”
I suggest asking any attorney you’re thinking about hiring the following questions:
- Do you communicate via email?
- Can I access my case file online?
- Do you have the capability to conduct a teleconference?
- How do you prefer to communicate with attorneys on the other side?