Because I want to get to know you. I want to explore your concerns and your goals. And I want to build trust. As you talk, I am carefully listening.
You are calling a lawyer because something in your life needs fixing. You have a problem that needs to be solved. Or, you just need something done and you need it done right. But law does not exist in a vacuum. It only is of use in the service of your particular facts. No one knows automatically all the facts that may be relevant, so the more you talk, and the more I listen and learn, the more I am able to discern and help you meet your needs.
In our consumer and small business practice, most of the people we represent have never had an attorney before and do not know what to expect. I hope you will expect that we will care about you and take the time to know you. We want you to feel confident that you are receiving positive personal attention from a kind, competent, and caring attorney.
It is only in that circumstance that you can relax and trust me enough to tell me all I need to know to advise and represent you. You can take your time, because the process takes time. For example, I once represented a husband and wife who completed a written fact sheet, and then later answered specific questions responding “No” to the question “Do you have any retirement plans.” I prepared court documents with that information and they signed the documents. Fortunately, before I filed the documents, as we were relaxing after signing them, the couple expressed a desire to start saving “because those little things we have now do not amount to much.” I asked “What little things?” and it turned out that each of them did have a retirement plan. The information was important to that case, and it was fortunate that they recalled in time. They had not been trying to mislead me when they had previously answered “No” to the question. They just did not connect with the direct question. It was chatting in a relaxed environment that the information became accessible to them. That is what I mean about a process that takes time.
Please do not worry that a question seems too personal, or out in ‘left field’, or too embarrassing. I am here to advise you and guide you, not to judge you. And, frankly, the law is often in “left field” and I have to cover all the bases for that reason. My questions will never hurt you; proceeding with incomplete information is another story. And I will do all I can to help you feel comfortable in the process.