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Client Involvement

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10. What Can I Do To Make Sure My Lawyer Communicates With Me?

The duty to keep clients informed rests on attorneys, not clients. Here are a few steps clients can take to try to secure effective communication with their lawyers:

Establish, in advance, clear understandings about case updates. If an attorney’s practice is to initiate contact only when a development occurs, the attorney should indicate that to the client at the outset of the representation. If a client wants (and can pay for) regular updates regardless of whether developments have taken place, that too can be spelled out in advance—even included in a written retainer agreement.

A client who phones his or her attorney with a request for information can indicate a willingness to speak with the lawyer’s associate, secretary or paralegal. The lawyer must be too tied up on other cases to return the call personally, but may have time to pass the information to through an assistant. And because some lawyers have poor communication skills, the information coming from an assistant may be superior to what would have come from the lawyer.

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1. Should I Expect My Lawyer To Involve Me In Important Decisions? | 10. What Can I Do To Make Sure My Lawyer Communicates With Me? | 2. How Do I Know Which Decisions Are Important Ones? | 3. Are There Other Decisions That I Should Think About Making? | 4. If It's My Case, Why Can't I Make All The Decisions? | 5. My Lawyer Is Urging Me To Accept A Plea Bargain; I Want To Go To Trial. Who Gets To Make The Decision? | 6. I Want To Propose A Plea Bargain. Does My Lawyer Have To Present It To The Prosecutor? | 7. What Information Do I Need To Intelligently Decide Whether To Plead Guilty Or To Make Other Important Decisions? | 8. My Lawyer Threatened To Withdraw From The Case If I Did Not Follow The Lawyers Advise. Can A Lawyer Do That? | 9. Does My Lawyer Have To Keep Me Informed On My Case? |
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