Contacting a Lawyer From the Start — Is It a Good Idea?

Proceedings on the Horizon

You can see it coming.

You believe that breach of a contractual term has occurred, your business relationship with the other party to the contract has deteriorated, and losses arising from that breach are piling up with no end in sight.

This is a dispute, and it’s going to Court.

But does that realization alone warrant a decision to go out and secure the services of your preferred Lawyer?

Going It Alone

In many situations such as in minor civil disputes heard through the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal, going it alone and self-representing is certainly a feasible option – just take a look at paragraph 43 (2)(a) of the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 2009 (Qld). As far as the raw numbers go, self-representation may very well present as a more cost-effective course of action than seeking legal advice or securing legal representation.

But the aggregate cost-effectiveness of self-representation without legal advice generally ends at those raw numbers.

To effectively self-represent means to commit hours upon countless hours to the study, review, and analysis of rules and materials of the legal system which are both conceptually and practically complex. These hours will not account for the many more hours which will be required to develop your arguments within the framework of those rules and materials, nor for the drafting and filing of those documents necessary to effect your arguments within the scope of the Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 1999 (Qld) or otherwise, nor even for the stressful hours you will certainly spend in person articulating your case before a Court or Tribunal.

And then, even if you do end up ticking all of the necessary boxes to be an effective self-represented litigant – there will be little expert indication available of how favourable or unfavourable your legal prospects are as you progress through your matter.

Many of these issues can be addressed by consultation with your preferred law firm for legal advice.

Meeting Halfway

Another example of a commonly-encountered scenario is a party progressing deep into proceedings as a self-represented litigant or with representation that it does not feel is the right fit for the matter – and then, halfway through those proceedings, shifting care of the ongoing matter to its preferred law firm.

On one hand, it is certainly a commendable course of action to entrust your legal matter to the care of a law firm that you trust in and have confidence in. But in saying this, even a law firm with state-of-the-art filing systems, communication streams, and document access will need time to catch up on a matter that has been passed on to it halfway through the course of the proceedings.

If you are or have ever been a self-represented litigant, you will know this doubly to be true, as you will doubtless enjoy a firsthand familiarity with the amount of documentation and material dealt with in any given proceeding – and also with the importance of context and knowing the complete story of any given matter in the course of pursuing your best possible outcome.

Serving You Best

If you consider that any dispute or matter with legal implications has arisen or is in the process of arising, reaching out as soon as possible to your preferred law firm and seeking legal advice would certainly be an excellent course of action to take.

Reaching out and seeking legal advice early will not only inform and empower you, as a party or prospective party to a proceeding, regarding your legal position and the optimal steps to take from legal and commercial standpoints – it will also inform and empower the law firm you decide to reach out to.

By giving your preferred law firm the opportunity to be a part of your matter from the very beginning of the narrative, you will be equipping it to focus all of its efforts on securing the best possible outcome for you instead of playing catch-up on everything that it has missed.

Order Out of the Chaos

Here at Corney & Lind Lawyers, we are committed across all of our practice areas to principles of integrity, care, and attention in pursuit of just, redemptive outcomes in all of our dealings and engagements.

If you consider that any matter with legal implications has arisen or is in the process of arising, and believe that we are the law firm that can secure for you the best possible outcome – please feel free to reach out to us as soon as possible.

We would be delighted to gain the opportunity to assist and represent you in pursuit of your just, redemptive outcome.

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