There are many times in your life when you will need a solicitor. The law is a hugely complex subject, and knowing when you need legal help and when you don’t is vital. If you get arrested, getting a solicitor is, of course, a smart move. But what about when you’re buying a house or if you get sacked?
Life can get difficult if you don’t get legal help when you need it. So here are seven times in your life when hiring a solicitor is a good idea.
Buying a Home
If you’ve never bought a house before, you might not realise how important hiring a solicitor is. Buying your first home can be extremely stressful, but having a solicitor early in the process will work in your favour.
That’s because part of the house buying process is called conveyancing. It’s a complex task best left to a specialist conveyancing solicitor. They will carry out ID checks, manage all the legal documents, and ensure the property you’re interested in is all above board from a legal perspective.
If there are any issues like disputes over the land, planned developments that will affect the house, or even problems with sewers, your conveyancing solicitor will discover them. They will even handle all the fees and HMRC payments you’re liable for.
Families argue. Most arguments can be resolved with an apology, but when they can’t, a solicitor will be a useful resource. Whether it’s arguments about money, disputes over childcare, or disagreements over a will, a solicitor can act as a mediator and attempt to find a resolution that satisfies everybody.
Mediation involves hiring someone, in most cases, an impartial solicitor. They won’t specifically advise any arguing family members but will provide legal advice regarding any laws relevant to the disagreement. The goal is to make sure everyone involved can make a more informed choice before any legally binding decisions are made.
Apart from the death of a loved one, getting divorced is one of the most stressful experiences we can go through. It’s an emotional time, and it’s far too easy to let those emotions lead you to make bad decisions. So whether you or your partner is applying for a divorce, getting legal help is essential.
A divorce solicitor will give you vital advice about settling disputes, dividing up any marital assets, and ensuring children are provided for. Should the divorce case get problematic, your solicitor will be able to represent you in court too.
If you’re not married, but you own a home with your partner and want to separate, that will work much the same as getting a divorce. Your solicitor will be able to resolve any property ownership disagreements, as well as advise on how children will be affected.
Starting a Business
It’s never been easier to start a business, but there are a lot of legalities involved. You need to ensure you have the correct legal structure (sole trader, limited company etc.) and register your business with Companies House. You also have to make sure you have all the correct trading licences and may even need to find a place to work from, like an office.
While you can do many of these tasks yourself, mistakes can end up being costly. That’s why entrepreneurs need to think seriously about hiring a solicitor. Ideally, you should choose one that already has experience in the sector you will trade in. That’s because they will already have a good idea of the necessary compliance obligations and can help you get up and running faster.
You might also want a solicitor if you’re hiring staff. Employment law is exceptionally challenging to get right without formal legal training. And if you make mistakes when hiring and firing, you could end up with some major issues.
Breaking the Law
If you’ve broken the law, you’ll likely need legal representation. If your crime was nothing more than speeding on the motorway, then a solicitor isn’t going to be necessary. But if you have been caught drunk or dangerous driving, the consequences can be much more serious.
If you don’t hire a solicitor quickly, you could start losing out on options. Early intervention can mean you get little more than a mandatory driver awareness course for dangerous driving. But the longer you leave it, the fewer options you have.
Of course, if you become the subject of a criminal investigation (or you’re prosecuted), you’re absolutely going to need legal help. Going to court is extremely stressful, and it can often be overwhelming. You’ll need a solicitor experienced in criminal defence who will be by your side from the initial police interview to the courtroom (and beyond).
Making a Will
Your will is your way of ensuring your estate (what you own) gets allocated the way you want it to when you die. It’s important to have a will and update it whenever you go through a major life change, such as buying a house or getting married.
It’s commonly assumed you should only bother with a will if you have children. However, many people go through life without one because they aren’t entirely sure what an estate is.
Your estate doesn’t have to be a luxury manor. Instead, it can be everything from property and vehicles to possessions, investments, and any savings you have. Without a will, you will have no say over who gets what in the event of your death. Wills are, of course, legally complex, and no two people will need the same one. So whatever the size of your estate, it’s always a good idea to have a will written up (yes, even if you’re young!).
When You’ve Been Sacked
Getting fired is rarely an enjoyable experience, especially if you’re not expecting it. That’s even more true if you get fired for faulty reasons. Fortunately, employees in the UK have a clearly defined and robust set of legal rights. So if you get fired for what you believe to be illegal reasons, you need to get in touch with a solicitor.
Employers are allowed to sack people, but if their reasons for doing so are considered unfair. You can challenge it in court. In most cases, you’ll need to fit some quite strict criteria. These will include the duration of your employment (you usually have to be in a role for two years before you can claim unfair dismissal) and whether the dismissal was unfair from a legal point of view.
If you think you have a case, you need to act quickly. Even if you have been sacked unfairly, there is a time limit to make a claim. If you leave it longer than three months from the last day of your employment. Then your rights to make a claim vanish. So contact a solicitor quickly if you believe you’ve been fired unfairly.
Know When to Get Legal Help
Life is complicated, and the law is even more so. Getting involved with legal issues is often stressful and even intimidating. That’s why it’s so important you understand the times in your life when getting a legal expert will be beneficial. Don’t put off things like your will just because you’re worried about talking to a solicitor. Despite what you may think, they are there to help you.