The Importance of Timely Responses from Your Lawyer

As an experienced lawyer, I have seen many clients struggle with the question of how long they should expect to wait for a response from their lawyer. It's a valid concern, as legal matters can be time-sensitive and require prompt attention. In general, responding within a few days to a week is considered reasonable, taking into account the circumstances and prevailing practices within the legal community. However, every case is unique and there are various factors that can affect the response time of your lawyer. As you go through this process, a lot of concerns come up, and with each of those issues that come to your mind, with every question and concern, you want to get an answer from your attorney.

Realistically, when should you expect your phone to ring? When should you expect to receive an email in your inbox again? Well, that depends on your relationship with your lawyer and the type of lawyer you have hired. It's important to understand that lawyers are people like anyone else and that they have time away from the office. They may have other cases or personal matters that require their attention. In such cases, they may not be able to respond immediately. However, it's also important for lawyers to prioritize their clients and their needs. When I recently went on leave, another lawyer stepped in temporarily and always responded to emails within 24 hours.

This is a common practice in the legal community, as it ensures that clients' needs are met in a timely manner. If your lawyer is unable to respond promptly due to unforeseen circumstances, they should have someone else who can handle urgent matters on their behalf. If you find yourself waiting for a response for an extended period of time, it's important to communicate your concerns with your lawyer. You could be on trial or for other reasons, so keep trying, and if you're not satisfied, you can always hire a new lawyer. But the only way to know what's reasonable and what you can expect is to sit down and have an honest conversation with your lawyer. During this conversation, you should discuss your expectations for response times and come to an agreement on what is reasonable for both parties.

It's also important to understand the workload of your lawyer. This is a lawyer who has to go to court to deal with judges, has to go to mediate with other clients, has to go to meet with experts to take statements. They may also have administrative tasks and other responsibilities that can affect their response time. It's crucial to have open communication with your lawyer and keep them updated on any changes in your case or any urgent matters that require their attention. This will help them prioritize their tasks and ensure that they are able to respond to you in a timely manner. It's also important for clients to understand that lawyers have a duty of confidentiality towards their clients.

Any information shared with them should be kept confidential. However, this also means that communication through email or phone may not always be secure. It's important for clients to be mindful of this and avoid sharing sensitive information through these channels. In conclusion, the key to managing expectations for response times from your lawyer is open communication and understanding. Tell the lawyer when you are preparing to hire him that you want to know what he is going to do.

You should find out with your lawyer what your circumstances are, what your situation is, and come to an agreement to decide together when you can reasonably expect a response.

Ernest Carsten
Ernest Carsten

Hardcore beer fan. Unapologetic troublemaker. Avid coffee guru. Total bacon lover. Devoted travel fanatic. Professional music buff.