When potentially hiring an attorney, you want to give the attorney as much information as possible, so that the attorney has no conflict of interest in taking on your case. For example, in a child custody case, you want to provide the attorney with the other parent’s contact info, to make sure that the attorney has not helped that other parent in a prior or current legal case. There can be a conflict of interest from the attorney knowing some confidential information about the opposing party that could impact your case. Below are a few questions to know the answers to:
- Is your potential attorney related by blood, marriage, or connected in any way to the opposing party in the case? If so, how?
- Has your potential attorney conducted any legal business or any other business with the opposing party in the case? If so, how?
- Is there anything else that you can think of that would make hiring your potential attorney a conflict of interest? If so, how?
Most attorneys have some type of conflict check that they do themselves, but if both of you can discuss it, it does not hurt to double check! And in some cases, you as the potential client may not mind the conflict of interest. This is not recommended, but if you do not mind the conflict of interest, the attorney will more than likely have you sign a document that waives the conflict of interest to help protect himself or herself from a potential breach of attorney/client privilege or malpractice lawsuit.
Did you find this information helpful? Attorney Yetunde Aird wrote this section as part of an e-guide on how to find the right attorney. The guide is available on her website, linked below, or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Included topics are: crucial steps when looking for an attorney, should you hire an attorney that is your family member or friend, are you familiar with your local bar associations and legal aid groups, how to make the most out of your legal consultation, is there a conflict of interest with your potential attorney, do you understand your fee agreement, and a fee agreement pledge to be financially responsible when hiring any attorney.
This guide is not legal advice but is for general information purposes only. No attorney-client relationship is established by reading this guide.