CLIENT’S RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES

THIS WEB SITE WAS ESTABLISHED FOR TWO REASONS:

First, as part of this firm’s dedicated effort to serve our clients in the most timely and economic fashion possible.

Second, to act as a reference tool for anyone seeking basic information about Federal bankruptcy or Arizona foreclosure laws.

When retaining an attorney every client has certain rights and responsibilities. Both you and your attorney must be committed to honoring these following rights and responsibilities.

-Diane L. Drain

Why should You use a licensed Arizona lawyer?

Arizona is facing a crisis of unlicensed people and companies who are offering very bad legal advice and producing bungled legal paperwork. As a direct result of this incompetent work the courts are facing a crisis number of poorly informed individuals.

In most cases the attorney’s fees are less than those that are ultimately charged by these “document preparation services.” See the State Bar of Arizona for more information on the UPL “unauthorized practice of law” problem facing our residents.

Not only does the experienced lawyer bring years of education and experience, but the State Bar of Arizona has established the Client Protection Fund to protect the integrity of the legal profession by reimbursing losses caused by the dishonest conduct of lawyers admitted and licensed to practice in Arizona.

Also read: Why hiring a cheap lawyer is very expensive.

CLIENT RIGHTS

client rightsCLIENT RIGHTS:  When you retain a lawyer, you are entitled to a lawyer who:

  • Will represent you diligently and ethically
  • Will be capable of handling your case. You are encouraged to ask about any new attorney’s education, training and experience before hiring them.
  • The lawyer should inform you periodically about the status of your case and give you copies of all the documents related to your case.
  • Will charge you a reasonable fee and tell you in advance the basis for that fee. You are encouraged to ask questions about the proposed fee. You should request written confirmation of your fee agreement whether it is a contingent fee, hourly or flat fee.
  • Will provide an estimate of the costs and legal fees. You should inquire as to the potential costs for your case. Before paying a bill, you are entitled to a written statement which itemizes the services and costs for which you are paying.
  • Will keep statement and information which you reveal in the course of your relationship confidential.
  • Will give you the right to make the ultimate decisions on the legitimate objectives to be pursued in your case, including deciding whether or not to settle your case.
  • Will show you courtesy and respect.
  • Will exercise independent professional judgment on your behalf, free from compromising influence.

NOTE: For more information about a lawyer’s responsibilities see A Lawyer’s Creed of Professionalism, a copy of which hangs in Ms. Drain’s office. She firmly believes in and lives by these provisos.

CLIENT RESPONSIBILITIES

client rightsCLIENT RESPONSIBILITIES:  When you retain a lawyer, you have the responsibility:

  • To give the lawyer a truthful and candid recitation of the facts surrounding your case. A lawyer can only help a client when there has been full disclosure. You have the responsibility to promptly notify the lawyer and changed circumstances.
  • To give the lawyer prompt responses to reasonable and necessary requests.
  • To understand that the lawyer has many other clients and to realize that other clients are equally deserving of the lawyer’s time and efforts.
  • To set appointments in advance rather than showing up at the office and expecting to be seen.
  • To treat the lawyer with courtesy and respect.
  • To communicate in a timely manner with the lawyer if you are unhappy regarding the representation and the reasons why.
  • To refrain from asking the lawyer to engage in behavior which is inappropriate, unethical, unprofessional, or illegal.
  • To be on time for all legal proceedings and appointments.
  • To pay the agreed upon lawyer’s fee in a prompt manner. If unforeseen circumstances arise concerning payment, you should inform the lawyer of the reasons for non-payment. If any billing entries are in questions, you should give immediate notice to the lawyer.

(provided by the State Bar of Arizona 602-252-4804)

A LAWYER’S CREED OF PROFESSIONALISM