No. of Recommendations: 2
Has ANYONE ever worked with a COMPETENT attorney? I have never met one. It appears to me that the only thing an attorney does is sign the letters and forms his/her secretary or legal aide prepare, and delay things enough until the litigants give up and reach an agreement on their own. Then, they take 30% - 40% of whatever was "won".

Although I tend to share your general opinion about attorneys, the biggest problem people probably have is trying to find a good one when you need one. As with other professionals and service providers, we usually won't find out how good they are 'til the job's finished. Hopefully, most of us can get through life without the need for a great attorney, or at least we can survive dealing with the average ones.

I spent more than a couple years working for a “law firm” that had about 1,000 attorneys. Although my experience is with those doing criminal work, I've dealt with a lot in civil practice as well. I know quite a few excellent ones and ones I would turn to for legal help. As in other fields where there are specialists, it all depends on your needs. Negotiate a settlement? handle a wrongful termination? try a personal injury case? depend you against a felony charge? There'll be a different “competent” attorney that could best handle each of these matters

As in dealing with doctors, I found the best, but not foolproof, way has been to get a referral from that one really good doctor you've already found.
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