Cincinnati Law Firms

Cincinnati Law Firms

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Cincinnati Law Firms

Guide to Cincinnati Law Firms

People living in the greater Cincinnatti area have many lawyers and law firms to choose from.  This array of choices can seem overwhelming if you've never looked for a Cincinnati law firm before.  Before you decide to pick a lawyer out of the phone book or using a web search, use this guide to understand the differences between different types of Cincinnati law firms.  Knowing what you want can make the difference between having a lawyer/client relationship that works and having a bad experience.

Understanding Your Legal Problem

It's important to understand your own needs and desires before you even begin your search for a Cincinnati law firm.  Different types of Cincinnati law firms cater to different types of clients, and having a good grasp on your own legal situation will help you find the right firm for you.

You can start by getting out a pen and some paper and writing down briefly what your legal problem is.  Try to keep this statement brief—one sentence, two at the most should do it.  Then, in another brief statement, write what your ideal resolution of this legal situation would be.  This will help you narrow your list of Cincinnati law firm choices to those that handle cases like yours.

Understanding What You Want

After writing your problem and solution, start writing down what you're looking for in Cincinnati law firms.  Do you want to find a Cincinnati law firm where you're one of only a small number of clients?  Do you want to look only at Cincinnati law firms where the lawyers have extensive experience?  Is there a personality trait you expect out of your lawyer?  

Whatever it is, write it down—there are no right or wtong answers, and knowing what you want will make it easier to narrow the list of Cincinnati law firms you are looking at.

Types of Law Firms: Big Law Firms

The largest Cincinnati law firms are like legal machines, with over a hundred lawyers and numerous support staff working together on huge numbers of cases at any given time.  While these firms command high prices, they also offer amenities to high-profile clients that a smaller Cincinnati law firm would have a hard time matching.  Here are some indications that larger Cincinnati law firms may be the right choice to handle your legal issues:

ñ You need to find a Cincinnati law firm that can give you advice and representation for a large number of issues, including specialty areas that may be harder to find in a smaller firm.

ñ You need representation from Cincinnati law firms for a corporate client instead of as an individual.  A large Cincinnati law firm is likely to have many corporations on its client list already, and will understand how to handle issues related to corporate representation and billing.

ñ You want a firm with a very professional and businesslike atmosphere, and want professionalism rather than friendliness from the lawyer representing you.

Types of Law Firms: Small Law Firms

Large Cincinnati law firms are definitely not for everyone.  The price alone of a large Cincinnati law firm (hundreds of dollars an hour) can be enough to make many clients balk.  For most regular people, big Cincinnati law firms are simply too expensive—and the environment can be off-putting to some clients as well.  Smaller firms offer both budgetary advantages and an environment more friendly to new or inexperienced legal clients.

Smaller Cincinnati law firms are much more likely than their large-firm cousins to offer alternative fee structures, like flat fees that pay for your legal representation from the beginning to the end of your case.  Many misdemeanor criminal charges can be defended for a flat rate at small Cincinnati law firms, as well as common civil issues like divorce and bankruptcy.  If paying your legal bills all at once is difficult, a small Cincinnati law firm may be willing to work with you to set up a payment plan.

You may also want to consider these Cincinnati law firms for non-monetary reasons.  You will have closer personal contact with your lawyer and may have a direct phone number to talk to him or her rather than a secretary.  Small Cincinnati law firms are also more likely to have experience with clients who have never needed to hire a lawyer before, and can be warmer and friendlier to inexperienced clients.

General Practice vs. Specialty Firms

While size is a big factor in narrowing down your Cincinnati law firm options, you should also be aware of the differences between practice areas at different Cincinnati law firms.  Historically, most law firms were “general practice,” meaning that they took nearly any client who walked in and chose not to specialize in particular fields.  Today's Cincinnati law firms have become much more specialized as legal fields have changed.

There are still circumstances in which clients prefer a general practice Cincinnati law firm.  For instance, if you want to hire a firm for several different legal matters (getting a divorce and revising your will, for instance), you may want to deal with the same lawyer repeatedly instead of using different Cincinnati law firms for each new issue.  In these circumstances, a specialty practice may not serve your needs well.

Specialized firms are often best for clients who have legal needs that are of a more temporary nature.  If you want to sue a driver after an accident, personal injury specialist Cincinnati law firms may be best able to help you.  A Cincinnati law firm specializing in bankruptcies is likely to have a very streamlined process for declaring Chapter 7 or 13 bankruptcy.

There are legal specialists practicing in nearly any area of law you can imagine at Cincinnati law firms.  Firms specializing in tax law, energy law, environmental law, family and divorce law, medical malpractice, and many other fields are common in the greater Cincinnati area.  Once you have determined the kind of practice you want to look for, narrowing down your Cincinnati law firm options will be substantially easier.

 

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