Top Five Questions to Ask Professional Advisors, Before you Hire

Here's a list of "top five" questions to ask those who will eventually become an integral part of your trusted advisory team.

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When choosing an Attorney don’t forget to ask:

1. What is your background and experience with companies in my industry; with my revenue levels and the particular issues my company is facing?

2. How do you charge for your legal services? Hourly rates, flat fees or a combination of both? What are those fees and do you require monthly retainer payments or do you charge on a project basis? Most importantly, how can you help me keep my legal fees and costs down once I’ve hired you?

3. Who will be doing the actual legal work on my business matters — you or someone else in your firm? (Make sure you meet those people, too.)

4. How will you keep me informed about the progress of my business legal matters? Should I call you periodically or do you prefer e-mail check-ins? How quickly can I expect to hear from you in response to my call or email?

5. Tell me a story: How were you able to help someone in similar circumstances to mine?

For more details on how to hire an attorney, when you’ll want to have one on your team and how to manage the relationship so that it works for you, I have created a program, How to Choose and Use Attorneys, available through my site GreatBusinessLawResources.com. It comes with a handy checklist and questionnaire to make sure you ask your attorney–and yourself–all of the pertinent questions you want the answers to when you’re pre-screening.

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Photo: Tommy Hilfiger


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