A Scam Victim’s Guide to Hiring a Lawyer

A Scam Victim’s Guide to Hiring a Lawyer

(Last Updated On: August 12, 2022)

A ScamScam A Scam is a confidence trick - a crime -  is an attempt to defraud a person or group after first gaining their trust through deception. Scams or confidence tricks exploit victims using their credulity, naïveté, compassion, vanity, irresponsibility, or greed and exploiting that. Researchers have defined confidence tricks as "a distinctive species of fraudulent conduct ... intending to further voluntary exchanges that are not mutually beneficial", as they "benefit con operators ('con men' - criminals) at the expense of their victims (the 'marks')". A scam is a crime even if no money was lost. Victim’s Guide to Hiring a Lawyer

Defending & Protecting Yourself – This Applies In Most Countries

A SCARSSCARS SCARS - Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc. A government registered crime victims' assistance & crime prevention nonprofit organization based in Miami, Florida, U.S.A. SCARS supports the victims of scams worldwide and through its partners in more than 60 countries around the world. Incorporated in 2015, its team has 30 years of continuous experience educating and supporting scam victims. Visit www.AgainstScams.org to learn more about SCARS. Guide

Hiring a Lawyer

Hiring a lawyer can feel overwhelming — especially if you need one to advise you on complicated things such as being a scam victim or money muleMoney Mule A money mule sometimes called a "smurfer," is a person who transfers money acquired illegally (e.g., stolen) in person, through a courier service, or electronically, on behalf of others (usually criminals that they are knowingly or unknowingly affiliated). Typically, the mule is paid for services with a small part of the money transferred - but not always. Mules may or may not be aware that they are performing these actions. Money mules are often dupes recruited online for what they think is legitimate employment, not aware that the money they are transferring is the product of crime. The money is transferred from the mule's account to the scam operator, typically in another country. Similar techniques are used to transfer illegal merchandise. Mules can be prosecuted for numerous crimes.. Knowing what to expect before you choose a lawyer can make the process easier.

Finding the Right Kind of Lawyer

Many lawyers specialize in certain areas of law, such as family, estate, personal injury, contracts, or civil rights. It’s important to find a lawyer who has relevant experience with the legal area that you need. Take time to search for the right lawyer.

  • Ask family, friends, or co-workers for recommendations.
  • Check with your state and local bar associations.
  • Consult lawyer referral services offered by a union or community group you belong to.

Once you have some options, plan to talk with more than one lawyer before you choose someone to represent you. You also might be eligible to get free or low cost legal help, depending on your income and other circumstances.

For Scam Victims There Are Several Considerations

Victims can have several different concerns and the type of attorney you will need will be based upon these:

  • Regular Scam Victims – in many cases a scam victim may send money from a retirement account and this can have tax consequences. We suggest that you speak with a tx law attorney for advice about tax liabilities – such as penalties and interest. You may also want to explore litigation against financial institutions or money mulesMoney mules Money mules are a type of money laundering where a person transfers illicit funds through a medium (such as a bank account) to obfuscate where the money came from. There are different types of money mules including witting, unwitting, and complicit. to recover your money, in these cases, you will want to speak with a civil litigation attorney.
  • Money Mules – to be a money mule you either received money on behalf of the criminals from other victims or you allowed your accounts to be used by them. In these cases, we suggest that you first speak with a criminalCriminal A criminal is any person who through a decision or act engages in a crime. This can be complicated, as many people break laws unknowingly, however, in our context, it is a person who makes a decision to engage in unlawful acts or to place themselves with others who do this. A criminal always has the ability to decide not to break the law, or if they initially engage in crime to stop doing it, but instead continues. defense attorney and let them advise you. You may also need a tax attorney for money you received since it might sound as income.
  • Family Members – if you have a family member in a scam or if they engaged in behaviorBehavior   Behavior / Behavioral Actions Otherwise known as habits, behavior or behavioral actions are strategies to help prevent online exploitation that target behavior, such as social engineering of victims. Changing your behavior is the ONLY effective means to reduce or prevent scams. harmful to you you might want to explore a family law attorney.
  • All Victims – you may be left with considerable debt after the scam ends, therefore it is a good idea to consult with a bankruptcy attorney to explore your debt management options.

Before Talking With An Attorney

Before you take up any of the attorney’s time get yourself fully organized. We suggest that you read our Scam Victim’s Checklist

Prepare a one or two-page outline of the overall crime – go in being brief and to the point. If you are disorganized the attorney will have to charge you more and may not even want to take your case.

Interviewing a Lawyer

Before your first meeting with a lawyer, find out if you’ll have to pay for the lawyer’s time. Often a first consultation is free. Be ready to give a short summary of your legal situation and the solution you want. You’ll want to ask:

  • About their experience with your kind of case
  • How they would get the solution you want
  • About the chances of getting the solution you want, and other possible outcomes
  • Whether this lawyer, other lawyers, or paralegals in the law firm would do most of the work on the case
  • About the fees for each member of the law firm who would work on your case
  • How long it might take to resolve your legal issue or case

Hiring a Lawyer

After you find the right lawyer, keep asking questions until you’re sure you understand what you’ve both agreed to. Then, get the agreement in writing. Discuss possible approaches to your case, your expectations, and the work to be done, including:

  • How, and how often, will the lawyer update you?
  • What information or documents does the lawyer need from you to help with the case? Before you send original documents, make copies for yourself. Ask the lawyer to send you copies of any important documents from your case.

Payment Arrangements and Fees

When you choose a lawyer, you’ll talk about how to pay for their services. Most lawyers charge by the hour, or part of the hour, they spend working on a case. Some lawyers charge a flat fee for a service, like writing a will. Others charge a contingent fee and get a share of the money their client gets in a case. Your lawyer should tell you if ¾ in addition to paying a fee ¾ they’ll charge you for expenses related to your case: for example, copying documents, court filing fees, or depositions.

Be sure to get the fee agreement in writing. Each time you get a bill from your lawyer, review it to see how your money is being spent. Ask the lawyer to explain any charges you don’t understand.

Retainer agreements

Before your lawyer starts to work on your case, they may ask you to pay a financial deposit, called a retainer. The lawyer may use the retainer to pay expenses and fees.

Hourly rate

If you pay a lawyer by the hour, your final cost depends on how long it takes to complete your case. A lawyer’s hourly rate depends on their skill and experience. An experienced lawyer may charge a higher hourly rate than a beginner, but they may take fewer hours to do the job. Before you agree to pay a lawyer an hourly rate, get a written estimate of the number of hours it will take to complete your case, so you have an idea of your total costs.

Flat or “fixed” fee

If you pay a flat or “fixed” fee, you pay the lawyer a set dollar amount for a service, like writing a will. Many lawyers charge a flat fee for uncomplicated services like drafting incorporation papers, handling an uncontested divorce, or filing a simple bankruptcy. Before you decide to pay for a service with a flat or fixed fee, find out exactly what services the fee does and doesn’t cover. It’s also good to ask the lawyer what will happen if your uncomplicated service needs more work than expected.

Contingency fee arrangement

If you hire a lawyer on a contingency, it means their fees will be a set percentage of the total money you get if you win your case, plus reimbursement for case-related expenses like depositions, expert witnesses, and filing fees. In a contingency fee arrangement, the lawyer takes on the risk that your case might be unsuccessful. If you don’t get any money, your lawyer won’t get attorney’s fees. In some contingency fee arrangements, you might have to reimburse the lawyer for case-related expenses even if you don’t win your case. Be sure you know exactly what your agreement covers.

You may want to look for a contingency fee arrangement if you don’t have money to pay a lawyer’s retainer or hourly fees up front. If you’re thinking about a contingency fee arrangement, know that:

  • Most states limit the kind of cases that are allowed to have contingency fee arrangements. For example, many states don’t allow contingency fee arrangements in criminal cases.
  • You can negotiate the size of the contingency fee.
  • The size of the contingency fee should be based on how much work the lawyer will do. You may be able to negotiate a fee agreement that gives the lawyer a lower percentage if the case settles quickly and a higher percentage if the case lasts longer and goes to trial.
  • You may be able to negotiate a sliding scale fee. For example, you could negotiate a fee that pays the attorney 30 percent of the money you get up to $10,000, then 20 percent of any additional money you get up to $50,000. There is no “official” or “standard” amount for a lawyer’s contingency fee, but most states limit the attorney’s fee to a “reasonable” percentage of the total amount recovered.

Other Ways to Get Legal Help

Depending on your financial and other circumstances, you may qualify for free or low-cost legal services. For example, you may be eligible for free legal help in landlord-tenant or divorce cases. You can also get free information, forms, and guides online about legal rights in your state on issues like bankruptcy, debtors’ rights, and employment. You may find free or low-cost legal help connected to state bar associations, and at legal clinics run by accredited law schools.

If You Have Problems

Lawyers are subject to state ethics rules and are required to charge reasonable fees. If you think your lawyer didn’t treat you fairly, didn’t handle your case effectively, or overcharged you, talk with him or her and try to work out an agreement. Depending on the circumstances, you may be free to fire your lawyer, or you may need a judge’s permission. If you can’t resolve things with your lawyer, or you believe they have acted improperly, consider filing a complaint with your state or local bar association.

Remember

We present this for educational purposes only. SCARS is not an attorney nor law firm. We cannot offer you legal advice. We strongly encourage you to seek the advice of a licensed attorney to answer your questions.

PLEASE SHARE SO OTHERS WILL KNOW

Essential Tools For Every Scam Victim From SCARS Publishing

Visit shop.AgainstScams.org

Each is based on our SCARS Team’s 31 plus years of experience.

SCARS Website Visitors get an Extra 10% Discount
Use Discount Code “romanacescamsnow” at Checkout

SCARS GREN BOOK - The SCARS STEPS Guide to Scam Victim Recovery

SCARS GREEN BOOK
Self-Help Self-Paced Recovery Program Guide

LEARN HOW TO RECOVER ON YOUR OWN

This program is designed to help scam victims struggling to recover on their own and for those who want to understand the overall process. You can be using other resources, such as traumaTrauma Emotional and psychological trauma is the result of extraordinarily stressful events that shatter your sense of security, making you feel helpless in a dangerous world. Psychological trauma can leave you struggling with upsetting emotions, memories, and anxiety that won’t go away. It can also leave you feeling numb, disconnected, and unable to trust other people. Traumatic experiences often involve a threat to life or safety or other emotional shocks, but any situation that leaves you feeling overwhelmed and isolated can result in trauma, even if it doesn’t involve physical harm. It’s not the objective circumstances that determine whether an event is traumatic, but your subjective emotional experience of the event. The more frightened and helpless you feel, the more likely you are to be traumatized. Trauma requires treatment, either through counseling or therapy or through trauma-oriented support programs, such as those offered by SCARS. counselingCounseling Counseling is the professional guidance of the individual by utilizing psychological methods especially in collecting case history data, using various techniques of the personal interview, and testing interests and aptitudes. A mental health counselor (MHC), or counselor, is a person who works with individuals and groups to promote optimum mental and emotional health. Such persons may help individuals deal with issues associated with addiction and substance abuse; family, parenting, and marital problems; stress management; self-esteem; and aging. They may also work with "Social Workers", "Psychiatrists", and "Psychologists". SCARS does not provide mental health counseling. or therapy, qualified support groupsSupport Groups In a support group, members provide each other with various types of help, usually nonprofessional and nonmaterial, for a particular shared, usually burdensome, characteristic, such as romance scams. Members with the same issues can come together for sharing coping strategies, to feel more empowered and for a sense of community. The help may take the form of providing and evaluating relevant information, relating personal experiences, listening to and accepting others' experiences, providing sympathetic understanding and establishing social networks. A support group may also work to inform the public or engage in advocacy. They can be supervised or not. SCARS support groups are moderated by the SCARS Team and or volunteers., or completely independent – on your own!

The SCARS Steps program is a complete program and is provided for the purpose of helping scam victims to overcome this experience. Throughout this SCARS Steps Program, we speak about issues and challenges that a victim may have and help guide them through their recovery. But each person is different and it is important to understand your own reasons for being vulnerable to being scammed.

After the trauma of being scammed, you need to take steps to recover and move on. This may be an alternative to counseling in the short term, but we still encourage you to seek out professional help & support. Throughout this SCARS Steps Program, we speak about issues, challenges, defects, or problems that a victim may have in a generalized way.

The SCARS GREEN BOOK will help you recover from your scam offline and it will always be there when you need it!

Get it here

SCARS SLATE BOOK - A Guide For Families & Friends Of Scam Victims

SCARS SLATE BOOK – Let Us Explain What Happened!

A Guide For Families & Friends Of Scam Victims

HOW TO HELP ROMANCE SCAM VICTIMS FOR FAMILIES & FRIENDS OF SCAM VICTIMS

This SCARS Publishing book represents a complete guide to help the families and friends understand how these scamsScams A Scam is a confidence trick - a crime -  is an attempt to defraud a person or group after first gaining their trust through deception. Scams or confidence tricks exploit victims using their credulity, naïveté, compassion, vanity, irresponsibility, or greed and exploiting that. Researchers have defined confidence tricks as "a distinctive species of fraudulent conduct ... intending to further voluntary exchanges that are not mutually beneficial", as they "benefit con operators ('con men' - criminals) at the expense of their victims (the 'marks')". A scam is a crime even if no money was lost. work and how to help the victim.

The SCARS Slate Book should be purchased by family and friends to better understand what happened to the victim and the traumatic impact on them. But it can also be shared by the victim so that they do not have to explain to family and friends about the scam. This publication is to help others to help Scam Victims to make it through this traumatic experience and recover.

Each person is different and it is important to understand how relationship scamsRelationship Scam A Relationship Scam is a one-to-one criminal act that involves a trust relationship and uses deception & manipulation to get a victim to give to the criminal something of value, such as money! Click here to learn more: What Is A Relationship Scam? work and why people are vulnerable; to being scammed, how they were lured in, then groomed and manipulated. This understanding is essential in helping them through the process of ending the scam and then on to recovery. The SCARS Slate Book will provide the information necessary to help support a victim through this process.

Get it here

SCARS RED BOOK - Your Personal Scam Evidence & Crime Record Organizer

SCARS RED BOOK
Your Personal Scam Evidence & Crime Record Organizer

ORGANIZE YOUR INFORMATION TO MAKE THE REPORTING PROCESS SIMPLE!

Helps you get and stay organized. This publication is to help Scam Victims organize their crime information. Complete this information before reporting to the police then bring this book with you

Before or after reporting to the police the RED BOOK gives you a dedicated tool to record all the essential facts of this crime. The Victim, the Scammers, the Money, and your Police interactions. Everything that really matters can be easily recorded for your immediate use and for the future!

As we have seen, money recovery/repayment programs can become available years after the scam ends and you need to keep all the details of this crime in case it is needed. We have also seen scammers being extradited to the U.S. and other countries, this will help in the event you testify or give statements, Additionally, this helps you have your information ready to qualify for victims’ benefits, compensation, or aid.

The Official SCARS RED BOOK is your way of recording all the important facts of this crime so that you do not lose essential information, Complete the RED BOOK then put it away with the confidence that you will have it if or when it is needed.

Get it here

SCARS BLUE BOOK - Survivor's Recovery Journal
SCARS LIME BOOK - Wisdom & Motivation for Scam Victims
SCARS CHERRY BOOK - A Guide To Understanding Your Fear
SCARS WORKBOOK - 8 Steps To Improvement
SCARS WORKBOOK - Understanding Self-Blame, Guilt, and Shame
100% of all profit goes to support FREE Scam Victims' Services

See all our books and motivational gifts for scam victims at Shop.AgainstScams.org

100% of all profit goes to help SCARS help more scam victims worldwide.

Your generous purchase allows us to maintain our scam avoidance, support, and recovery services. Please help SCARS and stand proud.

Always Report All Scams – Anywhere In The World To:

U.S. FTCFTC The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is an independent agency of the United States government whose principal mission is the enforcement of civil (non-criminal) U.S. antitrust law and the promotion of consumer protection. The FTC can also act as a clearinghouse for criminal reports sent to other agencies for investigation and prosecution. To learn more visit www.FTC.gov or to report fraud visit ReportFraud.FTC.gov at https://reportfraud.ftc.gov/#/?orgcode=SCARS and SCARS at www.Anyscams.com

PLEASE SHARE OUR ARTICLES WITH YOUR FRIENDS & FAMILY

HELP OTHERS STAY SAFE ONLINE – YOUR KNOWLEDGE CAN MAKE THE DIFFERENCE!
THE NEXT VICTIM MIGHT BE YOUR OWN FAMILY MEMBER OR BEST FRIEND!

SCARS the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Incorporated

By the Society of Citizens Against Relationship ScamsSCARS SCARS - Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc. A government registered crime victims' assistance & crime prevention nonprofit organization based in Miami, Florida, U.S.A. SCARS supports the victims of scams worldwide and through its partners in more than 60 countries around the world. Incorporated in 2015, its team has 30 years of continuous experience educating and supporting scam victims. Visit www.AgainstScams.org to learn more about SCARS. Inc.

A Worldwide Crime Victims Assistance & Crime Prevention Nonprofit Organization Headquartered In Miami Florida USA & Monterrey NL Mexico, with Partners In More Than 60 Countries
To Learn More, Volunteer, or Donate Visit: www.AgainstScams.org
To see ScammerScammer A Scammer or Fraudster is someone that engages in deception to obtain money or achieve another objective. They are criminals that attempt to deceive a victim into sending more or performing some other activity that benefits the scammer. Photos visit www.ScammerPhotos.com
Contact Us: Contact@AgainstScams.org

Updated SCARS RomanceScamsNow.com Posts:

Mitigating Fraud In The Digital Age – Digital Fraud [Infographic]

Mitigating FraudFraud In law, fraud is intentional deception to secure unfair or unlawful gain (money or other assets), or to deprive a victim of a legal right. Fraud can violate civil law (e.g., a fraud victim may sue the fraud perpetrator to avoid the fraud or recover monetary compensation) or criminal law (e.g., a fraud perpetrator may be prosecuted and imprisoned by governmental authorities), or it may cause no loss of money, property, or legal right but still be an element of another civil or criminal wrong. The purpose of fraud may be monetary gain or other benefits, for example by obtaining a passport, travel document, or driver's license, or mortgage fraud, where the perpetrator may attempt to qualify for a mortgage by way of false statements. A fraud can also be a hoax, which is a distinct concept that involves deliberate deception without the intention of gain or of materially damaging or depriving a victim. In The Digital Age Digital Fraud An [...]

The Unique Shame Of Being Scammed Again

The Unique ShameShame Shame is an unpleasant self-conscious emotion typically associated with a negative evaluation of the self; withdrawal motivations; and feelings of distress, exposure, mistrust, powerlessness, and worthlessness. Of Being Scammed Again After The [...]

Psychology of Scams – Article Catalog

Psychology of ScamsPsychology Of Scams Psychology Of Scams is the study of the psychological or emotional effects of scams or financial fraud on victims of these crimes. It helps victims to better understand the impact of scams on them personally or on others. To find the SCARS articles on the Psychology of Scams, use the search option to enter the term and find them. The How & Why of Scam [...]

Scammer Threats – Nothing To Fear But Fear Itself! [UPDATED]

Scammer ThreatsScammer threats Very often when a scammer is not getting cooperation from a victim or the victim refuses to send money, the scammer will then resort to threats. These treats can be of physical violence or retaliation in one of several forms, such as doing or sextortion. African and Indian scammers routinely make treats at the end of a scam. They will threaten to expose intimate photos or chats. They may even threaten to kill or harm family members. It is important to remember that African and Indians scammers are professional liars - they tell stories to achieve a result - and do not waste time if it does not get them more money. Almost all such threats are just more lies meant to intimidate victims. Most victims are safe to ignore them. However, any victim that actually feels fear should contact their local police for advice. Nothing To Fear But Fear Itself! A [...]

The World Online Is Not Safe For Those That Don’t Know!

The Issue Of Race In Scam Reporting
Click Here To Learn More!

FIND SCAMMER PHOTOS ON
ScammerPhotos.com

FIND SCARS ON FACEBOOK
CLICK HERE

Disclaimer:

SCARS IS A DIGITAL PUBLISHER AND DOES NOT OFFER HEALTH OR MEDICAL ADVICE, LEGAL ADVICE, FINANCIAL ADVICE, OR SERVICES THAT SCARS IS NOT LICENSED OR REGISTERED TO PERFORM.

IF YOU’RE FACING A MEDICAL EMERGENCY, CALL YOUR LOCAL EMERGENCY SERVICES IMMEDIATELY, OR VISIT THE NEAREST EMERGENCY ROOM OR URGENT CARE CENTER. YOU SHOULD CONSULT YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER BEFORE FOLLOWING ANY MEDICALLY RELATED INFORMATION PRESENTED ON OUR PAGES.

ALWAYS CONSULT A LICENSED ATTORNEY FOR ANY ADVICE REGARDING LEGAL MATTERS.

A LICENSED FINANCIAL OR TAX PROFESSIONAL SHOULD BE CONSULTED BEFORE ACTING ON ANY INFORMATION RELATING TO YOUR PERSONAL FINANCES OR TAX RELATED ISSUES AND INFORMATION.

This content and other material contained on the website, appsApps Applications or Apps An application (software), commonly referred to as an ‘app’ is a program on a computer, tablet, mobile phone or device. Apps are designed for specific tasks, including checking the weather, accessing the internet, looking at photos, playing media, mobile banking, etc. Many apps can access the internet if needed and can be downloaded (used) either for a price or for free. Apps are a major point of vulnerability on all devices. Some are designed to be malicious, such as logging keystrokes or activity, and others can even transport malware. Always be careful about any app you are thinking about installing., newsletter, and products (“Content”), is general in nature and for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical, legal, or financial advice; the Content is not intended to be a substitute for licensed or regulated professional advice. Always consult your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider, lawyer, financial, or tax professional with any questions you may have regarding the educational information contained herein. SCARS makes no guarantees about the efficacy of information described on or in SCARS’ Content. The information contained is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible situations or effects. SCARS does not recommend or endorse any specific professional or care provider, product, service, or other information that may be mentioned in SCARS’ websites, apps, and Content unless explicitly identified as such.

The disclaimers herein are provided on this page for ease of reference. These disclaimers supplement and are a part of SCARS’ website’s Terms of Use

Legal Notices: 

All original content is Copyright © 1991 – 2021 Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc. (D.B.A SCARS) All Rights Reserved Worldwide & Webwide. Third-party copyrights acknowledge.

SCARS, SCARS|INTERNATIONAL, SCARS, SCARS|SUPPORT, SCARS, RSN, Romance Scams Now, SCARS|INTERNATION, SCARS|WORLDWIDE, SCARS|GLOBAL, SCARS, Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams, Society of Citizens Against Romance Scams, SCARS|ANYSCAM, Project Anyscam, Anyscam, SCARS|GOFCH, GOFCH, SCARS|CHINA, SCARS|CDN, SCARS|UK, SCARS|LATINOAMERICA, SCARS|MEMBER, SCARS|VOLUNTEER, SCARS Cybercriminal Data Network, Cobalt Alert, Scam Victims Support GroupSupport Group In a support group, members provide each other with various types of help, usually nonprofessional and nonmaterial, for a particular shared, usually burdensome, characteristic, such as romance scams. Members with the same issues can come together for sharing coping strategies, to feel more empowered and for a sense of community. The help may take the form of providing and evaluating relevant information, relating personal experiences, listening to and accepting others' experiences, providing sympathetic understanding and establishing social networks. A support group may also work to inform the public or engage in advocacy. They can be supervised or not. SCARS support groups are moderated by the SCARS Team and or volunteers., SCARS ANGELS, SCARS RANGERS, SCARS MARSHALLS, SCARS PARTNERS, are all trademarks of Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc., All Rights Reserved Worldwide

Contact the law firm for the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Incorporated by email at legal@AgainstScams.org

Share This Information - Choose Your Social Media!

Leave A Comment

Go to Top