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Jamaica Attorneys by C. Holness
At some point in most people's lives, they will need to seek the counsel of an attorney to help them resolve issues of a legal nature.
An attorney-at-law, or “barrister and solicitor” is an individual who has graduated from a recognized law school and earned a Legal Education Certificate. In Jamaica, this is a requirement for admission to the Jamaica Bar Association.
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Law is a broad discipline with many distinct areas which results in the need for attorneys who have dedicated their practice to each of these.
When you are faced with a situation in which you need the advice and representation of an attorney, you will need to first identify the particular area of practice he or she must offer clients in order to find someone who is best suited to handle your case.
Which Areas Of Legal Practice Are There?
Family law attorneys deal with matters such as divorce, child custody and support, division of assets, and paternity suits. When you are purchasing or selling a property, a real estate attorney will help you with all of the necessary documents to make it legal.
Personal injury attorneys represent those who have been physically harmed due to the actions or inactions of another, and seek reasonable compensation for their suffering and medical costs.
People who are dealing with employment related issues such as sexual harassment, wrongful dismissal, and discrimination in the workplace, will require the services of an employment attorney.
Matters pertaining to business activities such as contracts, patents, and incorporation, can benefit greatly by hiring a business attorney.
Criminal attorneys are perhaps the most “visible” type of legal counsel, these individuals are responsible for representing clients who have been charged with a criminal offense and appear regularly in court.
These are just a few examples of the many types of professionals you will find in the legal field.
How Does An Attorney Get Paid?
The fee structure
required by an attorney may vary from one to the next, and it is important to
find out this information prior to deciding whether or not to hire him or her.
The pay structure needs to be feasible for the client based on his or her
means. Most fee structures fall into one
of the following categories:
- Fixed Fee – one
total fee paid to cover all aspects of the particular service provided by the attorney, such as
drawing up a will or documents of incorporation.
- Hourly Rate – the
client will pay based on the total number of hours the attorney must spend on the
case. This rate is often determined by the reputation of the law firm.
- Contingency Fee –
this is a conditional type of fee, most often seen in claims, the client only
pays the attorney if the case is won, in which case he or she receives a
percentage of the settlement.
Contingency Fee – a hybrid payment plan which involves a lower hourly rate
along with a percentage of any settlement won in court, seen most often with
very lengthy cases.
Where Can Jamaicans In Need Of Legal Counsel Receive Financial Assistance?
It can be challenging for many Jamaicans who require the services of an attorney to come up with the necessary funds to cover the legal fees.
Fortunately, there are two organizations they can turn to for assistance in this matter at the present time.
- There are the Government Legal Aid Clinics, located in both Kingston and Montego Bay, and staffed by caring, dedicated attorneys who provide services to the financially disadvantaged for a low cost.
- There is also Future Services International Limited. This organization helps eligible clients obtain funding for legal assistance and representation, and also features a useful “Find a Lawyer” online database tool that will help you locate prospective attorneys that are a good fit for your legal needs.
Visit their website at http://www.futureservicesja.com
What Other Factors Should Be Considered When Choosing An Attorney?
Besides the attorney's area of specialization, fee structure, and if he or she will accept Legal Aid or other supplementary funding, there are other criteria you should keep in mind when choosing whom you will hire:
- Personal chemistry/rapport – you want to select a legal professional with whom you have an easy and clear level of communication regarding every aspect of the case.
- Availability and accessibility – does the attorney provide you with more than one way in which you can contact him or her? Hours of availability?
- Does the attorney possess a proven track record of successful outcomes for his or her clients with cases similar to yours? It pays to do a little research in this area.
Is There A Directory Of Jamaica Attorneys?
There very well might be but I found that the Jamaica Yellow pages offers the same thing and it is available in the public domain.
In fact, between the Kingston and the Rest Of Island search, I found nearly 1000 lawyer or lawyer offices listed!
You can find them here:
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About The Author
A patriotic Jamaican who adore its culture, Wellesley has been using this medium to share what he calls 'the uniqueness of Jamaica with the world' since April 2007.
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including the Jamaica Gleaner's Hospitality Jamaica, Carlong Publishers,
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