The Importance Of An Attorney
Increasingly, “Do It Yourself” (DIY) is the name of the game. Need to change your oil? You can find out how to do it from any one of the thousands of videos on YouTube – someone has probably even done it on your exact car by now and uploaded it to assist you step-by-step. You can DIY how to bake a wedding cake, how to sew anything from a button into place to an intricate piece of lace, how to fix a leaky pipe, how to plant a vegetable garden, how to build a chair. Almost anything can be accomplished with a little time and patience, the right tools and some elbow grease, it seems. Beats paying a professional to do it for you.
Except sometimes, you really do need someone who has spent some time and effort to become a professional in their line of work, to help you out with something in your line of work, or in other places in life. If you have a toothache, you might be able to figure out how to pull the tooth out yourself, but that’s unwise. Instead, you’ll go to a dentist, who will tell you what’s going on with the tooth and what your options are for solving the problem, as well as help you fix it. When you end up with a matter that needs to be resolved in court, or involves any kind of legal framework, you call a local attorney, such as one of the dedicated professionals at Tate Bywater, Attorney At Law, in Fairfax County.
Attorneys, or lawyers, are important professionals in society because they help people negotiate actions between themselves and the law. When the law is in opposition to or otherwise stopping what you want to achieve, an attorney can help you navigate that conflict. When the law upholds what you want, in opposition to what someone else wants, attorneys can help make sure your voice is well-represented. Local lawyers function to negotiate the ways and means of society’s structure, our laws and our regulations, the legislative framework of our lives. They bring our most important issues to light and they help to ensure justice is served in Virginia. Attorneys play a vital function in our world. There are a lot of different ways to go about doing certain things, and you can sometimes take them on yourself, but when it comes to the law, it’s always better to invest in a lawyer.
A Brief History of Local Attorneys
How did the role of the local attorney evolve in our society? Why are they so integral to the facilitation of healthy social and legislative commerce? The history of the lawyer is fascinating to explore. The necessity of lawyers throughout the ages has waxed and waned; at some times their role is more important and in other times less so. In modern society, attorneys play a vital role, but that always wasn’t the case and their role wasn’t always the same as it is today. Like most professions, it has evolved over time and adapted as society has required. Let’s take a quick look into the history of attorneys to better understand this profession.
The roots of lawyers in Western Civilization are probably found in the “orators” of ancient Greece, who were asked to plead cases before the courts by their less-literate (but often more powerful) peers in society. These orators were not allowed to represent them professionally, however, as the law at the time dictated that orators were not allowed to charge anything for their services. So while orators were most likely the most functionally similar to an attorney as possible in ancient Greece, it was still quite a stretch.
The ancient Romans, on the other hand, improved upon almost everything that the Greeks pioneered after vanquishing their society and taking it over, and that included the law. Orators in ancient Rome could be paid; their profession was legitimized by the emperor as “advocacy” and they themselves were “advocates”. They unfortunately had a pay ceiling imposed by Emperor Claudius which was incredibly low, however.
While modern day Americans seeking out local attorneys’ assistance might consider this a boon and perhaps think we need to go back to such a system, it was not enough to make a sustainable living for the advocates of the time. By the time the Byzantine Empire rolled around, advocates were really lawyers: they had to be enrolled on the bar of their court, they were only allowed to be barred on one court at a time, and there was a limit on how many lawyers could be on any court’s bar at any given time. And this all by the 4th century CE.
When the Middle Ages began following the decline of the Roman Empire and Western Europe, however, the legal profession collapsed completely. There simply wasn’t a need for it. Around the 12th century, however, the Church began to require expertise in canon law, and a small number of men began to practice canon law due to the demand. And by the mid-13th century, the legal profession was again being regulated by the governing bodies of church and state. Law had officially returned to Western civilization.
Their power continued to grow, and as America grew into a nation, lawyers were an essential part of the function of that nation. By the beginning of the 18th century, lawyers had become powerful local and colonial leaders. The first State Attorneys General were created by the Judiciary Act of 1789 mandated by Congress, and United States President George Washintgon nominated the first U.S. Attorneys on September 24, 1789. The rest, as they say, is history.
Now, attorneys can help resolve myriad conflicts in a number of different ways. Here are some of them.
Bankruptcy is the state of legally being unable to pay certain debts. While bankruptcy might feel like a moral or ethical judgment, it’s simply a tool to use to protect yourself when you cannot pay your creditors. Life happens. Sometimes we cannot manage our debts. Whatever your circumstances may be for needing to declare bankruptcy in the United States, you are far better off doing so with the assistance of a local bankruptcy attorney than without one.
In many places, including Virginia, you are allowed by the court system to file for bankruptcy protection on your own, that is, without engaging the services of an attorney. This is called filing “pro se” and it is perfectly legal. It is not, however, recommended. This is because while statistically your chances of your bankruptcy being upheld by the courts if you DO have an attorney are very high, they drop precipitously without one. In fact, if you file for bankruptcy under Chapter 7 protections with a bankruptcy lawyer, the likelihood of success is 96.2%. If you do not have an attorney, that drops to a success rate of 66.7%. If you choose to file pro se under Chapter 13 protections, your success rate is only about 2.3%. With a bankruptcy attorney, it jumps to 41.5%.
Why is that? It’s not like your debt changes at all. So why should you have to hire a bankruptcy attorney — in other words, pay more money — to declare that you don’t have enough money? Seems a little backwards, right?
Bankruptcy law, like most legal matters, is incredibly complex to navigate. There are a lot of considerations and factors that need to be taken into account for you to make sure you are filing for the right kind of protection and giving the court all of the information it requires. If you don’t give the court everything it needs, even if it was a completely honest mistake, you may be held liable for that in the future and have to pay restitution or possibly even serve time in a correctional facility for your error. The much safer, much more reliable, much better option is to hire a bankruptcy attorney. They know these laws inside and out and will be able to help you navigate the court’s requests to get you safely through your bankruptcy filing.
Business and Corporate Law
Owning a business is a great adventure. You’re making some product(s) or providing some service(s) that other people need enough that they are willing to pay you for it. That’s great! But you don’t want to jump headlong into entrepreneurship without the assistance of a business or corporate lawyer. That’s okay, you’re thinking, I can figure out the legal stuff on my own. I don’t need a corporate lawyer draining my hard-earned funds.
Actually, it’s very likely that you do. Pursuing any business venture, large or small, requires negotiating a lot of difficult legal frameworks, regulations, and other obstacles. Sure, you could tackle it on your own, but you didn’t invest in your business so that you could become a corporate lawyer. You have a business to run, and that requires all of your time and commitment.
This is where hiring a local business or corporate attorney in Virginia is important. Business or corporate attorneys are well-educated in the regulations and structures that your business needs to operate within and utilize. They are able to draw on their considerable training in the rules and regulations, and they probably have some resources that you may not even know about that they can point you to in order to help your business succeed and grow. Corporate attorneys are crucial to the survival of your business. They can help you navigate the difficulties that come up with ease and make sure that you are operating in a way that is safe and legal. And if anything happens that may require you to defend your business in court, they are there to represent you.
Civil litigation is for anything that involves money, but not criminal accusations. Civil litigation covers a wide range of different types of disputes. Some of the most common are employment or labor disputes, medical malpractice cases, education law cases, or intellectual property disputes. It is vital to hire an attorney for a civil litigation dispute.
The role of a local civil litigation lawyer in these disputes is to represent your best interests, but that role starts long before you set foot in court. First of all, a civil litigation attorney can advise you as to whether you really have a case or not. Even if you believe firmly that you do, they will be able to provide a thoughtful and thorough analysis of your situation and an objective assessment of what it is going to look like to bring your case to court. They then will be able to take you through the entire litigation process itself, if it is determined that you have a solid enough case to bring to court.
Civil law is an intense field with a great many sub-specialties, processes, and procedures. You don’t want to enter into any kind of civil litigation without a civil litigation lawyer at your side.
Criminal and Traffic Law
Criminal and traffic lawyers function to defend you in court when you are being accused of committing a crime or a traffic violation. Because traffic violations vary widely in severity, they are often considered lesser crimes, which is the reason for the distinction. Representation by a local criminal lawyer in Vienna is essential in ensuring you’ll be able to go through the complex system of taking a case to trial (or not) while preserving your rights.
Criminal law is probably one of the most visible of the fields of law; it’s certainly what many people think of when they think of an attorney raising objections in a courtroom and the like (though this and other ideas about law certainly do also apply to other legal arenas).
Family law covers such things as marriage, divorce, child custody, and the like. While emotions can easily become a part of any type of legal case, family law is especially sensitive, due to the nature of this type of law. Family law includes, but is not limited to, legal separations, divorces, custodial agreements and assignments, regulations governing custody, divorce and marriage, grandparents’ rights, marriage licensing and certification, common law marriages and civil unions, and the like. Attorneys who practice family law often interact with branches of the government on local, state and federal levels such as child welfare, social services, police services, and much more.
It is almost always quite necessary to enlist the assistance of an attorney when dealing with family law. Local family law attorneys specialize in managing these matters for their clients so that they can continue along in their lives without having to worry about these extremely sensitive legal matters.
Healthcare Provider Law
A healthcare provider lawyer is engaged in protecting healthcare institutions and organizations. They provide guidance on various healthcare rules, laws and regulations, such as Stark, HIPAA, EMTALA, the Anti-Kickback Statute, and state and federal privacy laws. They assist healthcare facilities in developing internal regulations and controls, rules, protocols and guidelines, to protect the legal rights and responsibilities of these institutions. They also represent individual members of the healthcare industry when they are called before state and federal regulatory agencies.
Healthcare provider attorneys in Prince William County are crucial in providing representation in matters affecting patient care, patient rights and patient responsibilities, as well as healthcare industry professionals’ care, rights and responsibilities. They seek justice-focused resolutions to complex problems often involving ethics as well as legislation.
Personal Injury Law
These are a kind of civil lawyer who specialize in laws related to injuries endured by a person at the hands of another person or entity. Some examples of these kinds of situations are car accidents, occupational hazards, accidents that occur on another person’s property or business campus, and the like. Local personal injury attorneys work to make sure the victim of an accident is fairly compensated for their losses.
Personal injury attorneys are integral to the legal system. Without them there to advocate for their clients, the person or entity that injured that client may not be held responsible for their actions. Personal injury lawyers ensure that justice is served by holding the party accountable who injured their client before the courts.
Qui Tam: Whistleblower Protection
Qui Tam Law may seem fairly new, but laws protecting whistleblowers actually reach back to the 7th century CE. Qui tam law protects people who bring the attention of the law to an unethical business or professional practice or engagement, or a defrauding of the government. Qui tam lawyers work to make sure the people who actually bring these claims to light are not retaliated against for their actions, and it also provides these whistleblowers with a portion of the settlement should the entity be brought to court for its actions. Whistleblower lawyers in Vienna are especially skilled at seeking appropriate financial recompense for their clients.
Real Estate Law
Lawyers who specialize in real estate law ensure their clients are getting fairly treated when purchasing property. In some states, local real estate lawyers are required to be present at the time of a real estate transaction. In others, they are not, but having a real estate attorney at your side when you are buying property is always a wise choice.
Real estate lawyers help their clients understand legal documents and contracts, and know the rules and regulations governing real estate transactions. Issues like zoning concerns, mortgage fraud, the transfer of titles and deeds, and verification of any liens, restrictive covenants or any other prohibitive legal issues that might interfere with the successful sale of the property to their client are just a few of the details that real estate attorneys mitigate on their clients’ behalf.
Wills, Trusts, Estate Planning
Local lawyers who specialize in wills, trusts, and estate planning are crucial to management of these documents in a way that ensures they will be valid in court. Since you will not be present to clarify these documents yourself, hiring an estate planning attorney is the most effective way to guarantee your effects are handled exactly the way you want them to be.
Estate planning can be upsetting to deal with sometimes, but really, it’s just about leaving clear instructions for your possessions and property after your passing. Doing so not only will give you peace of mind, but it will guarantee that your loved ones or business partners managing your affairs will be able to have a clear idea of what you want to have done, and can manage it as efficiently as possible.
You may think that you know exactly what you want to have happen with your property and goods and therefore can write your own will, trust or estate plan. While this may be true, you may not know all of the legal ramifications that you need to consider. Without that information, your document may not stand up in court.
Lawyers are Essential
While the necessity for attorneys has waxed and waned throughout the ages, they are an essential part of society today. Attorneys are invaluable as tools to navigate tricky legal rules, regulations and laws, and to ensure the protection of people’s rights and liberties. Without lawyers, justice cannot be served in modern society. Contact your local Vienna attorney at Tate Bywater now.