The Dos and Dont's of Communication
When in the market for an attorney a few things are probably true. (1) You are probably stressed out. (2) You are likely a little unsure about the processes. (3) Lastly, I’d assume you want to hire an experienced and well-rounded attorney that can navigate the complex world of all things legal with and for you.
When considering all of these high stress things, you want to make sure you also consider the attorney-client relationship and that each attorney has a different “style”, including in regard to their communications. We here at Law Offices of Kevin C. Cox, LLC have some hard and fast dos and don’ts that allow for our prospective clients to better understand how we tick. If the following dos and dont’s are speaking your language and you’d like to further consider retaining our Firm, we’d love to learn more about your legal needs. Contact information is available at the end of this post.
So here we go,
“The Seven Dos and Dont’s of Communication”
Do: Email firstname.lastname@example.org for scheduling concerns, brief update requests, and to set appointments to meet with your attorney before calling. This email is checked by multiple people in the firm all day long (yup, even on the weekends) and is absolutely the easiest way to get answers quickly.
Don’t: Call expecting an attorney to be readily available to chat with you. Our law firm is extremely busy and although this may seem as if someone “doesn’t have enough time” what it really is, is a reflection of the hard work being put into our cases. You don’t want an attorney who is sitting around waiting for phone calls. You want an attorney who is in court, who is actively working on cases, who is busy, otherwise you’re likely dealing with inexperience or laziness.
Do: Sign up and actively use and check our Client Portal for documentation, calendaring, and communication. The Client Portal should be your main source for updates and staying on track with any requests or upcoming deadlines and hearings. A blog post dedicated solely to our Client Portal and its benefits and uses will be rolling out next week, stay tuned! Don’t: Request updates on your case weekly. This gets extremely expensive for you. When you pay your retainer at Law Offices of Kevin C. Cox, LLC you sign a fee agreement that breaks down the hourly rate you pay for your attorney. That hourly rate is a true and real thing and should be being explained to you as such. For a quick example, our average divorce retainer allows for a little over 11 hours of work on your case, this includes communications. If you call weekly throughout your divorce to chat for a half hour, you’re going to spend the majority of your retainer on communication alone. Just don’t do it, it isn’t necessary.
Do: Call if other forms of communications aren’t available to you or have gone unanswered for an unreasonable amount of time (72 hours is a good rule of thumb to justify unreasonable).
Don’t: Call and neglect to leave a voicemail should you not get an answer. The phones here like to ring off the wall (hence this blog on better ways to communicate) and we simply can’t always answer. Understand if you do not leave a voicemail, we will not know that you called. The KCC Team is always actively working on cases, with clients, or working toward building a better business. We do not scroll through our caller ID to see if you called and didn’t leave a message, it’s simply not a good use of our time.
Do: Like and follow our Facebook, we share lots of important information there, including any issues that might be happening with phone or email systems (we’re human), as well as Holiday hours.
Don’t: Post publicly about your case on our Facebook (or any Facebook or social media platform for that matter). Further, do not use Facebook as a tool to communicate with us. Facebook messenger is not encrypted. Do not use it for anything other than asking about our hours, telephone number, or location. We will not respond to any legal questions via Facebook. We absolutely will not answer any calls that come from the Facebook platform even if you are an existing client-- even if it is an emergency, do not call using Facebook!
Do: Take advantage of our free consultation. Worst case scenario, we’re not a good fit. That’s okay, we don’t advise you just go with whatever attorney you meet with anyhow "just because". You should feel comfortable with who is going to represent you and the way they build relationships with their clients.
Don’t: Ask for additional free consultations or call with follow up questions in hopes of continued conversation off the clock. Unfortunately, we don’t have unlimited time and therefore we can only offer each client 1 free hour consultation.
Do: Make our staff aware of any concerns. Don’t: Be rude. Our legal assistants and administrative staff are not attorneys and cannot give legal advice. This is simply the rules and in the best interest of all parties involved. Please, do not be rude to our staff for not being able to answer your legal question, this will not be tolerated. If you have a deep-seated concern that is truly not being dealt with, request to escalate that concern to our Firm Administrator for further review.
Do: Stay actively involved in your case. Don’t: Worry so much. Cases move slow, a lot, rarely do we have a case that is lightning fast (though of course we all hope for that thing). No one has forgotten you if you haven’t heard from the office in a while. There can be major lags between filings and hearings. We got you!
Ready to schedule your free consultation?! Awesome! Click here to navigate back to our main page, scroll down just a tad and click on the ‘Request Consultation’ button and someone will reach out to you briefly. If you’d prefer to call to schedule the appointment, that’s okay too, the number is 740-622-6464 and our hours of operations are Monday-Friday 8:30am-4:30pm. If you follow the “dos and donts” you should absolutely have no issues with communication with our team.
Thanks for reading.
-The KCC Team