Generally, in a lawsuit, there are many factors that determine the fate of a proceeding and a good lawyer is one of them. Professionally, a lawyer or an attorney is one who pleads the case before a judge. It is the work of a lawyer to frame the case and advocate in a manner that the case is ultimately awarded in favor of the party he represents. When a lawsuit is filed, the parties have the option to hire a private lawyer or practice their right to legal aid and have a government or public lawyer represent them. In certain circumstances, a party can adopt pro se legal representation, i.e., represent himself before the court without any pleader. Countries such as the USA, New Zealand, India and many European countries allow the parties to refuse counsel and represent themselves before a court.
However, pro se representation is not often recommended. Unlike a lawyer, the person who lacks the proper training and knowledge or has inferior presentation skills often results in the overshadowing of a proper defense. Thus, pro se- litigants have a less comparable chance of favorable judgment for themselves over representation by an attorney.
There are many reasons that can be associated with why it is better to hire a lawyer than not to hire one. One such reason is the complexity of the case and the laws. Without a proper lawyer, it is extremely difficult to understand how to argue a case. Thus, a lawyer who has received proper training and has acquired such skills from attending law school can increase the chance of winning the case by presenting strong arguments. Further, a lawyer is well accustomed to the procedural code and its technicalities. A pro se defendant is likely to struggle with the understanding of the law and may have trouble with filing the correct legal documents with compliance to all its technicalities, which may negatively impact his or her case or have the case thrown away completely. But this situation is very unlikely with proper legal representative.
A lawsuit is a amalgamation of various factors, one of them being evidence. A lawyer knows how to prepare the evidence or challenge the introduction of evidence which a layman will lack the skills for. With proper training, a lawyer is able to identify any evidence which may be obtained using improper means or any contradictions in the witness statements and how to counter them. Additionally, lawyers have an established network of connections which may help them in discovering and challenging the opposing party.
Sometimes the cases are of such a nature that negotiation and settlements seem to be the best option. A well-experienced lawyer who has dealt with similar cases can at ease determine when a party should opt for settlement and helps a party negotiate fair terms.
A pro se defendant is very unlikely to win a legal battle against the opposing party who may have opted for a lawyer. This often results in inequity. For example, an article of the New York times which dealt with the claims of eviction observed that ‘having a lawyer makes all the difference. When tenants represent themselves in court, they end up getting evicted almost half of the times. With a lawyer, tenants win 90 percent of the times.
Thus, hiring a good lawyer becomes mandatory to win a legal battle. One of the most crucial aspect as to why a person does not hire a lawyer is because they cannot afford one. But there is an availability of alternatives such as law firms who charge minimal fees and low costing consultations.
In order to avoid the legal headache and to use the opportunity to defend oneself justly, hiring a lawyer becomes essential.
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