Q. You are owed money, the debtor refuses to pay, what can you do?
A. You sue the bastard.
Q. But legal costs are expensive, how can you minimise those costs?
A. You try to give your lawyer detailed, concise and complete instructions to reduce what work he has to do for you.
Yes, he is working for you, but that is the point. The more work that he has to do for you, the more he will charge you. Every minute that you save him, will save you $6.
Before meeting with him, you should do all the preliminary work to organise and present all relevant facts and documents to your lawyer in a way so that he can quickly review them and be in a position to advise you the best course of action.
- Unfortunately your Lawyer will need to carefully review all relevant documents about your claim, but his work can be made a lot easier (i.e. quicker and cheaper) if the documents are provided to him in a chronological order and are accompanied with a written chronology of relevant facts.
- You do not save costs by only giving him half the documents or half the story. He will waste a lot of time trying to understand the case only to eventually realise he does not have complete instructions
- You do not save money by giving him thousands of marginally irrelevant documents, and then express concern when he confesses that that the relevance of one of those documents to a particular issue escaped him.
- You have to work as a team, he must be able to freely contact you to clarify an issue or fact. The instructions that you give him may not be consistent with the documents. Inaccurate recollection happens, it is almost invariably innocent, but it is important that those issue be resolved promptly.