Getting the most out of your lawyer

Getting the most out of your lawyer


2 min read

Getting the Most Out of Your Lawyer (Without Having to Pay Extra for It!)

Everyone's heard bad lawyer jokes or stories of terrible experiences. Let's change the conversation and discuss 10 tips for a strong, cost-effective, and sustainable relationship with your legal team.

1. Find a lawyer who 'gets it' or at least gets you

Choose a lawyer who understands your business or start-up. This saves time and money as they don't need to learn the ins and outs of your industry.

2. Clear communication

Issues in communication are common complaints. Be clear, organised, and responsive with your lawyer. The more they know about your business, team, and strategy, the more cost-appropriate their services will be.

3. Let them do what you're paying them for - help you

Involve your lawyer in discussions, negotiations, and planning. This builds a strong relationship and gives your lawyer insight into your business operations.

4. Don't engage in side-negotiations without telling your lawyer

Keep your lawyer informed of all negotiations to avoid miscommunications and potential deal breakers.

5. Speak to your lawyer before agreeing to a deal/offer

Ensure you consult your lawyer before agreeing to terms, as you may unknowingly agree to something that cannot be fulfilled.

6. Read the documents they send to you and take their advice onboard

Read and understand the advice given by your lawyer. Feel free to question the advice but make informed decisions about accepting or rejecting recommendations.

7. Talk about costs and your budget on day one (and keep the conversation going)

Be clear about your expectations, goals, and budget from the start. Discuss what you want to achieve with your legal advisor.

8. Have realistic expectations

Be clear about deadlines and avoid leaving things to the last minute. Engage with your lawyer as early as possible to avoid paying a premium for urgent work.

9. What is the true value to your business?

Consider the value of advice or documents before engaging a lawyer. If something is crucial for your business, it's worth investing in getting it right.

10. Size can be everything

In an ideal world, contracts would be short and disputes non-existent. But as this isn't the case, ensure contracts have clauses for unexpected situations.

Final Words

Lawyers aren't magicians; sometimes things just aren't possible or legal. By applying these tips, you can build a smooth, cost-certain, and beneficial working relationship with your lawyer, possibly even creating a lifelong strategic advisor and friend.