First Meet With an Attorney: 8 Questions to Be Prepared for Answering 

If you’re meeting with an attorney it means that there’s an issue to be resolved. And if it’s a personal injury attorney, it means that someone has been hurt. Hence, your first meeting is a very crucial one. 

It is the first stage in what could potentially be a long relationship. So you want to make sure that you’re sufficiently prepared. One of the ways to prepare is to have a list of questions to ask. You want to learn all the facts to decide how to proceed. 

Most importantly, you want to be sure that this person is right for you and for what you need. And so, while this is not an exhaustive list, here are 8 questions you must prepare for answering by your attorney. 

1. How Long Have You Practiced Law?

A lot of first-time clients shy away from this question because they fear they might sound rude. They do not want to appear to be looking down on their potential lawyer or questioning his/her abilities. 

But the fact remains that if you’re going to be hiring someone to represent you, then you want to be sure that they are sufficiently qualified and have the required experience. You do not want to place responsibility for the outcome of a serious case in the hands of someone that is probably just starting out. 

2. How Many Similar Cases to Mine Have You Worked on?

This question further helps you narrow down the experience of your potential attorney. If you’re meeting a personal injury lawyer, you want to know how many cases like yours they have handled and what the outcomes were. They could have been practicing for a lot of years but never handled any case like yours. 

So this question helps you figure out if this person you’re considering has the required expertise in such issues. Previous experience in similar cases is always a plus. Such an attorney will know how to proceed, know the right questions to ask, and know how to advise you. 

3. For My Case, What Are the Merits and Demerits?

At this point, you want to know if you have a case and if you should even be hiring a lawyer. A lawyer with experience in similar cases will be able to point out the strengths of your case and factors that might help you win. 

They will also point out loopholes and issues that may arise down the line. You should be made aware of the possible challenges and risks you might face should you decide to pursue the case. This helps you decide if you would like to proceed or not. 

4. What Is the Likely Outcome of the Case?

This is one of the most pressing questions in the mind of any client. You want to know what will likely happen in the end. You want to know if you stand a chance of winning. Although it is an important question, a good attorney will not give you any definite answer or make any promises, especially in a personal injury case or criminal defense case. They should be able to tell you about the outcomes of similar cases. This will help tailor your expectations..

5. How Much Will It Cost to Represent Me?

Once you have decided that you will be pursuing the case, the next important question to ask should be the cost. Most lawyers charge by the hour, while in some cases they take a percentage of the compensation money in contingency cases. Other fees could also be included, such as court filing fees, payment of expert witnesses, deposition fees, etc. 

All of these fees are borne by the client or taken out of the reward money in a personal injury claim. So you must know beforehand how your attorney intends to get paid. This will help you prepare better. 

6. Who Else Will Be Working on the Case?

A lot of attorneys work with paralegals who do the routine work such as court filing and contacting witnesses. Some attorneys also engage private investigators when there are some unanswered questions. If you’re filing a personal injury lawsuit they may want to find out as much as they can about the other party. 

Also, Depending on the weight of the case, an attorney may work with associates. If any of this is going to be happening, you should request to meet these people instead of having strangers phoning you with questions or showing up unexpectedly at your doorstep. 

7. How Will I Be Getting Updates on the Case?

Communication is very vital when working with an attorney. You will want to know what is happening with your case. So you should establish clear expectations beforehand. Will you be getting daily or weekly updates, Or will communication be on an as-needed basis?

How will this interaction happen, is it via phone calls, text messages, or email? Aside from your lawyer, will anybody else be contacting you regularly? If a situation arises and you suddenly need to contact him/her, what is the best way? 

8. How Much of a Time Will It Take for Me to Resolve My Case?

This is another instance where your attorney might not be able to provide an exact answer. However, based on past experiences and the facts of your case, they should be able to give an estimate. This will help you anticipate what to expect and what you need to do. 

Your attorney should be able to tell you the statutes of limitations that apply to your type of case. And also, any mandatory deadlines, so you are not caught unawares. 


When meeting with an attorney for the first time, especially a personal injury attorney, you must be honest and open. Make sure that you tell them everything you know about the incident that led you to them. This is how you help your attorney help you. You must also ensure to get all the information you need. 

Ask every question on your mind, even if you think it sounds dumb. It is better to have all the facts than to proceed and realize midway that you shouldn’t have. Make sure you know what all the options for addressing and settling your case are. So you can make an informed decision. 

Your lawyer should inspire feelings of confidence and safety in you. And so, If you do not feel comfortable about your interactions with an attorney, or you do not think that they have your best interest at heart, you can always seek a second opinion.