You do not need a lawyer when fighting a speeding ticket claim or going to a small disputes court to settle a misunderstanding. However in the event of a legal dispute, you will be better off leaving nothing to chance and having an experienced attorney by your side. Not having a lawyer guide you can lead to lost claims or even prison time.

Here are the top nine reasons you need a lawyer:

1. The law isn’t straightforward

It’s never advisable to act like a know-it-all, especially in a court of law. Most often, even experienced lawyers do not represent themselves in a court of law. Even a solid case can unravel without the representation of an experienced legal counsel. 

2. A lawyer presents the strongest case

Once you tell your lawyer about your case, he or she will explain all your options and help you avoid severe penalties wherever possible. Admitting fault or pleading guilty is not the only option in a case where all evidence points directly to you.

3. Not having a lawyer can cost you much more

The stakes are high. A criminal case may put you at risk of doing jail-time, where a civil matter can damage you financially. In certain civil cases you can even claim legal fees, so having a lawyer will save you a lot of money.

4. A lawyer knows how to challenge evidence

Years of rigorous legal training enable lawyers to identify contradictions in arguments made against you by witnesses as well as challenge key evidence that was improperly procured. 

5. One misstep could ruin your whole case

There are deadlines for filling out and filing certain legal documents. Even a single delay or incorrect filing could derail your legal matter. An experienced attorney will ensure proper management and planning of your case.

6. A lawyer has access to witnesses and experts

Lawyers have a vast network of professionals and resources they regularly engage to assist with their clients’ cases. Witnesses and experts are key personnel who work closely with lawyers and can help challenge testimonies or evidence presented by the other party. 

7. Address issues at the outset rather than fix them later

“A stitch in time saves nine” is an old saying that applies especially when it comes to legal matters. Hiring a lawyer will potentially save you from many legal headaches down the road. Your lawyer will make sure the fine print is well understood before advising you to take any critical decisions.

8. A lawyer can help reach settlements and plea bargains

An experienced attorney will have seen many cases similar to yours. He or she will be in a position to advise you whether you should push to settle your matter or see it out through the trial. Your lawyer will also be able to help negotiate a fair settlement with the opposing party.

9. The other party probably has a lawyer 

You will be at a massive disadvantage if the opposing party has an experienced lawyer by his or her side. And guess what, he or she probably has one. It would be a massive disadvantage to you if you are left fending for yourself whilst the opposing parties’ lawyer picks holes in your case. 

So whether you’re staring at potential prison time, looking to get a fair deal from a messy divorce case or simply need defence in a lawsuit, hiring a good lawyer is a very wise decision.