A solicitor is usually your first point of contact in any legal proceedings, and may also act as your legal representative (sometimes in combination with a barrister). Many circumstances may require you to instruct a solicitor, from buying a home to obtaining a divorce. These are typically stressful events, so it’s important to find a solicitor with whom you can build a good relationship.
When might you need a solicitor?
A solicitor can provide vital legal services and support in many of life’s big decisions in the areas of home, family, work and life.
- Buying and selling property (conveyancing)
- Buying to let
- Disputes with landlords
- Obtaining planning permission (or objecting to it)
- Getting a divorce
- Family disputes and child support
- Your work
Setting up a business
- Employer / employee disputes
- Intellectual property disputes
- Insolvency and bankruptcy
- Legal disputes
- Criminal proceedings
- Making a will
- Probate (settling a will or an estate)
Finding your solicitor on Unbiased
There are two ways to find a solicitor on Unbiased.
The first way is to use our Connect tool. Just give as much detail as you can about what you need, and our system will match you with the nearest suitable solicitor.
The second way is to search and browse. Enter your postcode to see a list of solicitors in order of distance from you. You can then refine your search (e.g. to find solicitors with specialist expertise).
Your first meeting
When you’ve found a solicitor who appears suited to your needs, you should meet them in person if possible to confirm that they are a good choice.
Solicitors should have a practising certificate to confirm they are fully qualified and insured. Most display these in their offices. You can also check with the Solicitors Regulatory Authority to make doubly sure.
In your first meeting, talk about the process ahead of you and ask them to give you a clear idea of what will be involved at every stage. Ask about timeframes, too, so you have an expectation of when each stage of the process may be completed.
Also be sure to find out what they need from you (e.g. documentation) and when they need it by. You don’t want the process to be delayed because the solicitor is waiting for you to send them something, which you have forgotten about. This is one of the reasons why regular communication with your solicitor is important.