It is important to understand why a law firm is offering a free consultation
There are times when a free consultation is appropriate. However, there are 3 reasons a law firm might offer a free consultation that should concern you as a potential client.
- Desperate for business. Some firms may offer a free consultation because they need a way to attract clients and so they offer free consultations on all cases just to get clients in the door.
- Bait and switch. Some firms may offer a free consultation and may even offer what sounds like a reasonable retainer agreement, but they may not be fully transparent about the likelihood of future fees.
- Poor business acumen. Other times the lawyer may have good intentions, but may do too many things for free. Not having a profitable business model can cause a law firm to shut down. You need to feel confident that your lawyer’s firm will remain open and profitable so that you are not left out in the cold.
Koth Gregory & Nieminski offers a free consultation for some cases, but not all
Koth Gregory & Nieminski (KGN) offers free consultations for personal injury, car accident, workers’ compensation, and wrongful death cases because we empathize with people injured by someone else’s negligence.
These types of injury cases are handled on a contingency basis, meaning the client pays nothing unless we win the case. The free consultation is not a marketing strategy. We offer a free consultation for these types of cases because the injury victim has often been hurt through no fault of their own and are unable to work due to their injuries. We have seen many injured clients struggle to pay their bills while they are recovering, and we do not want to add to that burden by asking them to pay to discuss their injury claim with us. We want them to focus on getting healthy and learning to cope with any permanent limitations they may have to endure.
Our free consultations for injury victims are private and have no strings attached. While there is no obligation to use our firm, we encourage people who have been injured to not delay in hiring an experienced injury attorney to put pressure on the car insurance companies to be responsive and fair.
For the other areas of our legal practice, we charge an initial consultation fee under certain circumstances. While we enjoy providing people guidance, we have found that offering free consultations for all cases can have the negative effect of encouraging some people to seek our advice on meritless claims. We prefer to focus our time on helping people with legitimate legal needs and thus as a general office policy we charge for consultations for non-injury cases.
You may be wondering what happens during an initial consultation. At KGN, we have a streamlined process designed to maximize the effectiveness of the initial consultation. Our goal is to answer your questions, explain the process, and put your mind at ease that you have come to the right place. If for some reason we are not best suited to handle your case, like if it is not the type of case we handle or we have a conflict of interest, then we try to give recommendations for other firms to call. We do this because if you spend time and money meeting with us, we want to point you in the direction of someone we believe can help you.
When firms don’t do this, it can make finding a lawyer a time-consuming and expensive process. Our motivation is helping people so we feel good knowing that if we can’t help you, we are at least pointing you towards someone who can.
If your case does not involve an injury and the attorneys you meet with intend to charge you an hourly or flat fee that you cannot afford, there may be some resources available. Click this link to find help. https://www.isba.org/public/cantaffordalawyer