The mission to find a lawyer can be overwhelming. There’s a fair amount of them out there and even though you can narrow your search by specialist field the options are still plentiful. Furthermore, there are differing levels of experience and fees.
One popular way to reduce the search results is by searching online for a ‘lawyer near me’. However, is it actually important to hire a local lawyer or are you unnecessarily restricting your search?
What Are The Advantages Of Finding A Lawyer Near Me?
There are few, if any, particular advantages to hiring a lawyer near you. Of course, who is available locally varies greatly depending on where you live. In a bustling city like London or Manchester, there will be plenty of law firms. However, in villages and rural locations, there may not be a local lawyer with the relevant expertise you need.
If you’re working in a city and meeting your lawyer regularly then it could be an advantage to have a lawyer who can visit your office. However, with the technology and options we have to video conference, these days there’s no real reason your lawyer has to be local.
Possibly, there may be disadvantages to hiring a lawyer based in another country. This can be problematic only if they are not licensed to practice law in the UK. Or, if they are not as familiar with UK law. Even for lawyers who have moved abroad but still practise UK law, it may be worth checking how they are keeping up with changes in legislation.
There are a few exceptions when having a local lawyer could be an advantage. Such as in matters of planning permission where local knowledge could prove advantageous. However, even in such cases, it is their knowledge of the field of law, legislation and regulations that is the more fundamental.
What Are The Disadvantages Of Finding A Lawyer In My Area?
The most important thing to weigh when seeking a lawyer is their experience in the specialist area of law you’re hiring them for. If you’re only looking for a lawyer locally then they may not have the level of experience you need.
If you’re based in a more remote area then your choice may be limited. On the other hand, if you’re seeking a lawyer to check over a contract or draft terms and conditions for a small to medium business, then a big business city lawyer with eye-watering hourly rates may not be necessary.
Finding the right lawyer for you might mean not opting for a lawyer in your location. These days, location is less of a barrier being that we have such effective communications technology, such as Zoom and Google Meet-Up, which allows for video conferencing.
Should I Hire A Lawyer Near Me?
In many circumstances, I would urge people to shop locally, but not when it comes to legal representation or advice. Where your lawyer is based in the UK will likely make very little difference to how effectively they can do the job you need them to do.
Of course, if you’re needing them to represent you in person then it may be wise to limit your search to within a reasonable travelling distance. However, for SME business lawyers, searching for ‘lawyers near me’ is only going to narrow the talent pool. Not to mention that where a lawyer or consultant is based is often reflected in their rates, particularly for lawyers in London and lawyers in the South East.
How To Find A Lawyer
So, if you’re not going to limit yourself to a local search, then how do you find a lawyer?
Recommendations can be a very good way to find a lawyer for your business. However, do ensure that your needs or business are similar to those of the person the recommendation is coming from. There are a lot of great lawyers, it’s the ones with the right knowledge to help your business that we’re looking for. So, the one who helped your pub landlord get their alcohol license might not be the best one to draw up your shareholders’ agreement.
The Law Society also has a Find A Solicitor search facility which will collate a list of lawyers who may meet your needs. However, this does not usually include fees or connect you with that lawyer. On LegalDrop we enable you to search, compare and hire lawyers, based on what you need them for. Because we believe in transparency, you’ll also be able to see the fees upfront, as well as other important information, like the types of clients they usually work with. Find a lawyer for your business now.