Ever had a legal issue?

Sometimes they arrive totally out the blue.  Maybe it’s the phone call late at night bringing bad news, a sudden change in your fortunes, or even getting arrested.

Other times they are totally expected and can be planned for – like moving house, starting up a business, or getting your documents and ideas protected.

Whatever the case we often need a helping hand to get us moving.  This is where lawyers can come in. But how do you know which type of lawyer you might end up dealing with, or the different ways they can help you?

There are different types of lawyers.

Some lawyers are regulated, meaning that there is an official body keeping watch over them. There are some legal situations that only a regulated lawyer can help you with.

Other lawyers are unregulated; this means you won't get all the protections that you would when using a regulated lawyer. But they may be more affordable for you depending on what you want them to do for you.

Some unregulated lawyers work in other businesses and can provide you with other services.

There are different factors to keep in mind when choosing your lawyer - this may be the type of problem you need help with, costs, ease of access or the protections available to you if something goes wrong.

It's important to know what to expect before you make your choice. In this section you will find the key facts to help you choose between different legal service providers. You will also find information about the legal market place and the options available to do some, or all, of your own legal work.