Intake Law Consultation

Intake Law Consultation

Intake Law consultations are incredibly important in your law firm. This is the first in-person interaction with a potential client. A well established process should be in place for efficient decision making.

Good screening requires thorough and accurate information. It gives you the opportunity to evaluate the case, as well as the client. The client intake consultation can begin with the initial phone conversation.

intake law consultation	Client Intake Forms

You know that you need forms for client intake. Ensure your intake forms are of high quality. You should incorporated a template document requiring the essential information, as to not forget to document anything important.

Incoming Call Forms

A client may call you to inquire about their case. It is advised that you have a specific form for the person taking the call to document information. The data gathered during the call should be thorough enough to make a decision on whether or not the firm will want to take the case.

Processes and procedures should be in place to gather necessary information quickly. A quick response to the client is crucial, therefore the phone client intake process needs to be efficient. Make sure that all necessary information is gathered in order to respond to the client in a timely manner.

Office Forms

These are the forms that you will want to gather concrete and personal information such as: social security numbers, legal names (both past and present), spouse names and other necessary but sensitive information. This is the information that cannot be received from a phone conversation.

Intake Evaluation

There are many questions and concerns that need to be addressed during the consultation and afterward during the evaluation period. You need to ensure that the case is desirable for your firm. You also need to consider the client that you will be representing.

There are many reasons to not take a case. Be aware of your natural and professional instincts. You may not agree with the client’s decisions. If you think the client is lying, then you should not represent them. If the matter is outside of your expertise, you may not want to take the case.

Client intake law consultations are crucial in all law firms. When you consult with a law firm consultant, they can advise you with the best client intake practices. They have the experience and the knowledge to provide you with efficient intake strategies.

Avoid These Common Pitfalls When Conducting a Legal Client Intake Consultation

The first legal consultation you have with a potential client, known as intake, is an important first step in the relationship you will forge with that person. It is the basis for a healthy attorney-client relationship. Since intake is so crucial, it is important to avoid the following pitfalls that can befall even the best of attorneys.

client intake process law firm Being Insensitive

Usually, when a potential client visits a lawyer, it is not a happy occasion. Often people seek out legal help because they are in legal trouble or they need help with a major problem. These problems can be quite personal and embarrassing, such as overwhelming debt or a drunk driving incident. These issues can often produce strong emotions such as fear, guilt, and a sense of failure. Therefore, attorneys must show compassion and understanding in order to build a sense of trust. Being insensitive to the emotions a client will make it difficult to foster a healthy relationship that will allow you to help your client in the best way possible.

Interrogating your Clients

A good lawyer has strong interrogation skills, as it is an essential component of any trial. However, a great lawyer knows when to turn those skills off. The client intake consultation provides your clients with the opportunity to tell their stories in the way they need to with no judgments. Rather than asking pointed questions, keep them open-ended and allow your clients to provide the information freely rather than putting them on the defensive.

Interrupting

Of course, as a lawyer, you want to ask your clients lots of questions. But, avoid this temptation during the intake consultation. Give your clients time to tell their stories without interruption. This small gesture will indicate to your clients that you care about what they are saying.

Getting Distracted

Do not allow yourself to be distracted during the intake consultation. This is not the time to take incoming calls or to check your emails. Those tasks can be taken care of at another time. If you tend to them during an intake, it sends the message that there are issues that are more important than your client. No one wants to be made to feel like a second fiddle, especially during a vulnerable time.

Pretending to know answers

A client will have many questions during an intake consultation. You will not know the answers to all of them. It is perfectly acceptable to say you do not know, but will do research and find out. It is a far better response than making up an answer.

If you would like help improving your intake consultation techniques, contact Attorney Consultants, Inc. today. We can get you going down the right path.