Reading billboards on the drive home, Google searches, asking friends and family, and noticing advertisements in the phonebook are classic ways to find an attorney to handle your case and meet the needs that you have as a client. One definite action that should draw you away from a lawyer or law firm would be when they actively or aggressively seek you as a client.
For instance, if you are in the hospital after having an accident and someone comes to speak with you about a specific law firm, they are more than likely what is referred to as a “runner”, which is a person that represents a law firm and seeks clients that need an injury lawyer. It is ethically wrong to actively solicit a client within 30 days of an injury, especially in a critical time such as being injured in the hospital. Some good advice would be to steer clear of these types of law firms because if they do not mind breaking the ethical rules of approaching a client, they more than likely are not the type of lawyer that you would want to represent you in court.
On the other hand, it is ethically acceptable for a lawyer to send you an advertisement of their services in the mail if it is after thirty days of an accident. In the Bar Rules, which govern the practice of law, it states that the envelope that contains the letter as well as the letter itself has to be labeled with the words “advertisement” and they can inform you of their services and give a brochure or flier that explains further on their specific practice. As long as they are simply advertising their law firm, they are ethically correct.
Overall, it is important for you as a client to research the type of lawyer that you need, how they charge for their services, and the type of cases they have won in the past, as well as how they stand in reputation within the community. As the client, you ultimately have the decision of who represents you and what works best for your specific case. The best recommendation is to choose the one that abides by ethical standards so that you have peace of mind in knowing you are being properly represented for your case.