"Consulting" v. "Retaining:" Limited Scope Representation

What is limited scope representation? Limited scope representation is a way that an attorney may help you with particular aspects of your case, while you handle the rest of the case yourself.

With limited scope assistance, you may be able to handle the whole case yourself, and the attorney may just be there to help you out with technical issues such as pensions, stock options, and business interests. The attorney can also simply assist you with any questions related to the law as it applies to your case or give you information on court procedures. You may also hire an attorney to review any paperwork you have prepared or to appear in court for you, after you have done all of the investigation and other preparation yourself.

Discussing your case with your attorney, which issues should you handle yourself? When hiring an attorney on a consulting basis, it really is between you and the attorney how much of your case you hire the attorney to do. However, when hiring an attorney on a consulting basis, it is important to remember that some areas of the law are extremely technical and it is rare for non-attorneys to effectively handle them. Because of this, it is important to discuss all aspects of your case with your attorney before deciding which parts of the case you want to handle and which ones the attorney will assist you with. It is also important to keep in mind that there may be important issues presented by your case that you are not even aware of. An attorney can alert you to any such issues. In addition, sometimes new issues will pop up after your case is started. It is important to advise your attorney of such and discuss with them so that you know the potential legal consequences to you.

Never make assumptions about the law which applies to your case. Things you have seen on TV, or the advice of a friend based on the outcome of his case are often inaccurate and may not pertain to your particular situation. In addition, the law sometimes works differently in practice than in theory. The only way you will know the law as it applies to your case is to talk it over with a qualified attorney.

At Mello & Pickering, LLP, we represent many clients in a limited scope capacity. We offer 20 minute phone consultations or one hour consultations, wherein we can advise you what your best options are with regard to hiring an attorney to handle your entire case or hiring an attorney to help you with part of your case. We can explain the law as it pertains to your case and assist you in making the decision as to what portion of your case you want to handle on your own. Call us at (408) 288-7800 to set up an appointment today.