FAQ – Frequently asked questions

Relationship between client and attorney.

Most people know the work of a lawyer only from relevant television series. The following explanations are intended to give you a better understanding of the client-attorney relationship between the client and his or her attorney at Spühler Rechtsanwälte.

In many cases, it is advisable to consult a attorney at an early stage to avoid legal disputes that are time-consuming, costly and nerve-wracking.

 

In principle, it is possible to conduct legal proceedings in Switzerland even without legal representation. Due to the mostly formalistically structured procedures, however, small formal errors can lead to loss of rights. Therefore, the involvement of a attorney in legal proceedings should always be considered. In addition, the chances that legal claims can be enforced are increased.

 

You’re not sure you need an attorney? Contact the law firm Spühler Rechtsanwälte without obligation and get a first assessment of your problem by phone!

Contact the law firm Spühler Rechtsanwälte without obligation. If your case cannot be accepted due to lack of capacity or expertise, a suitable attorney will be recommended.

The mandating of a lawyer from Spühler Attorneys-at-Law is usually done according to the following scheme:

You fill out the appointment form

You can use the form to make an appointment.  Alternatively, you can contact us by telephone.

We will call you to make an appointment

After receiving your request, we will call you within two working days to arrange a meeting and clarify any uncertainties. If we are unable to accept the case due to lack of capacity or expertise, we will send you an e-mail recommending appropriate attorneys.

We will confirm the appointment by e-mail

After our phone call, you will receive an e-mail from the person handling the case confirming the appointment, as well as a list of required documents, if any, which we need to evaluate the case and which you should please bring with you to the first meeting. Please check your spam folder if you have not received the confirmation within two working days.

You make an advance payment of CHF 300.00

Until the financing can be clarified on the occasion of the first meeting, Spühler Attorneys-at-Law is obligated by virtue of the rules of professional conduct to secure the expenses by means of cost advances. For the first meeting, an advance on costs in the amount of CHF 300.00 must be paid in advance by bank transfer or, at the latest, by cash payment at the meeting (payment by card is not possible). If a legal protection insurance or victim counseling center has granted approval for costs, no payment is required.

Meeting in our Zurich office

On the occasion of the meeting, a first assessment of your problem can be made, further steps can be discussed and the financing of future legal expenses can be explained. Please take all relevant documents with you on the day of the meeting. Directions to the attorney’s office can be found on this website. A meeting is also possible by telephone or via video telephony.

The profession of attorney is subject to strict legal and professional rules. The bar associations and state supervisory authorities ensure compliance with these rules.

Important cornerstones are the attorney-client privilege and the independence of the attorney from third parties, such as companies, other lawyers and state institutions.

All information which the lawyer receives from his client in the course of his professional activity is subject to the attorney-client privilege, which is protected by criminal and disciplinary law. This information may not be disclosed to any third party or to the state without the consent of the client. Nor can they be demanded with state coercion. The attorney-client privilege covers correspondence, files and even the fact that a client is a member of the attorney’s clientele.

The attorney should be committed solely to the interests of the client. If a conflict of interest arises, the lawyer must resign from the case.

Contact Details

Spühler Rechtsanwälte
General-Wille-Strasse 19
CH-8002 Zürich

+41 43 344 05 05
info@spuehler.legal

Contactability

The telephone of the law firm Spühler Rechtsanwälte is served from Monday to Friday, from 8:00 to 12:00 and from 13:30 to 17:00. Outside office hours or if we are unable to take your call, you can leave a message by e-mail
(info@spuehler.legal).

E-mail and electronic communication

For technical reasons, communication via e-mail is not always reliable or confidential, which is beyond the control of Spühler Rechtsanwälte. Although e-mails are processed regularly, the receipt of e-mails may be disturbed or faulty for technical or operational reasons.

The communication via e-mail with the law firm Spühler Rechtsanwälte is considered as consent to communicate via e-mail.

Meetings

We would be happy to arrange a meeting with you. Please use the corresponding online form. Please note that we can only receive you if you have made an appointment in advance.

If possible, we recommend that you do not bring children to the meeting. Attendance at such meetings can be a great burden on children, especially if it is a conflict with another parent.

The law firm Spühler Rechtsanwälte charges its fees according to time spent plus statutory VAT of 7.7% and a 3% lump-sum allowance for small expenses. In addition, other necessary expenses, such as interpreter or travel costs, will be charged. You can find information about the specific costs under “Fees“.

Invoices for larger expenses (advance payment of court costs, debt collection costs, land register extracts, etc.) are forwarded directly to the client for settlement. Late payment of such invoices, in particular advances for court costs, may have legal disadvantages for the client.

The client is entitled to be informed initially about the lawyer’s fees and legal costs and to receive regular statements of account. It may at any time request information on the legal fees incurred. The total costs of a case can hardly be reliably predicted, as expenses may arise due to unforeseeable circumstances. The situation must be reassessed again and again.

In order to ensure the compensation of expenses, the law firm Spühler Rechtsanwälte regularly requests cost advances. This also offers the client cost control. In certain cases an advance on costs may not be required.

If a person lacks the financial means to finance a court case in addition to maintenance for himself and his family, and if the case does not appear to be hopeless, the state will grant free legal aid. If legal representation is necessary in this context to safeguard legal interests, the state will finance an attorney for the party in need. In criminal proceedings, unless the case is a simple one, the official (free) defence is granted. If the financial situation improves significantly after the court or criminal proceedings, the state can reclaim the expenses.

In case of obviously poor financial circumstances, the law firm Spühler Rechtsanwälte waives cost advances. It should be noted that a procedure must be initiated for the granting of (free) legal aid. If legal aid is not granted or the proceedings are not initiated, the client must settle the fee invoice himself according to the usual rates.

If the legal costs are paid by the state, only necessary legal advice and legal representation will be compensated. Excessive legal expenses for social and administrative support are not paid. Expenditure must be proportionate to the complexity of the case.

The law firm Spühler Rechtsanwälte also cooperates with legal protection insurance companies. After you have clarified by means of an appointment request whether we can take over the case, you should immediately and personally register your case with the legal protection insurance company and clarify whether insurance coverage exists. Inform the insurance company which person from Spühler Rechtsanwälte you would like to be represented by. The legal expenses insurance company will then issue a cost approval for individual (procedural) steps. You have no cost risk within the cost credit. The client is liable to pay for services that go beyond the cost approval or that are not covered by the insurance policy.

Please refer to the information sheet of the Swiss Bar Association.

The conduct of civil court proceedings is associated with further costs in addition to attorney fees. The party initiating the proceedings usually has to advance the court costs. The losing party in a lawsuit must pay the court costs and pay the winning party compensation. As a rule, the compensation of the parties does not cover the lawyer’s fees. The court costs and party compensation are calculated according to the value of the dispute (amount in dispute). A calculator as a guide (without guarantee) for calculating court costs and party compensation in the Canton of Zurich can be found on the website of the courts of the Canton of Zurich.

The granting of legal aid shall release the party from the payment of advances on costs and court fees, but not from the payment of any compensation to the party.

Legal expenses insurance may cover court costs and party compensation.

Other administrative and judicial proceedings outside civil law may also involve costs.

Your availability and change of contact details

It is important that you can be reached within a reasonable time. After a notification of re-presentation to private persons and authorities, correspondence and decisions can be sent to the lawyer with legal effect. If necessary, a response must be made within a certain period of time (e.g. appeal). Missing a deadline means in most cases a loss of rights. Please always announce holiday absences and changes in contact details well in advance. You are requested to notify the law firm Spühler Rechtsanwälte of any changes in your contact details even after the case has been closed.

Duration of the procedure

As soon as attorneys and/or authorities/courts are involved in a legal case, the handling of a legal case requires a lot of patience. Authorities and courts need a lot of time to do their work and are sometimes overloaded. Attorneys usually have a large number of cases pending, and work must be prioritized according to urgency. Correspondence and decisions from authorities and counterparties are usually sent to you as soon as possible.

Contact by the other party and authorities

If you have decided to be represented by the law firm Spühler Rechtsanwälte, it is strongly recommended that you do not make any statements and refer third parties to the law firm Spühler Rechtsanwälte in any contact by third parties (counterparty, opposing counsel, authorities, courts, etc.) in connection with the case. This ensures that your representative is informed of all the circumstances of the case and that no actions are taken that could result in legal disadvantages.

As soon as legal representation is indicated, authorities, courts and lawyers are generally required to contact your legal representative exclusively.

Changes to shared online access data

Please note that in case of separation or divorce from your life partner, you should change the passwords of all communication channels and online services (especially e-mail, Face-book, Linkedin, Xing, e-banking, including synchronizations such as iCloud).

It is also possible that your mobile device, tablet, computer, etc. is synchronized with the cloud and the other party can read the electronic communication or documents, which can be to your disadvantage in settlement negotiations and proceedings. The same applies in connection with other counterparties with whom electronic infrastructures have been shared.

Extraordinary termination of the mandate

In principle, a client-lawyer relationship may be terminated at any time without notice. However, it is not possible to terminate the mandate relationship untimely. This means, for example, that a lawyer cannot resign from his mandate two days before the court hearing, so that the client has no possibility to find a replacement.

The lawyer can terminate the mandate if the client does not pay his fee. If there is a conflict of interest, a lawyer must by law terminate the mandate relationship.

Ordinary termination of the mandate

The mandate ends ordinarily when the case is settled.

Case closure upon termination of the mandate

To close the case, you will be contacted by Spühler Attorneys at Law with an appropriate notice to clarify the last questions and to officially close the case. Please note that if your case was financed by an insurance company or by the state, you will have to pay for the legal fees yourself after the case is closed.

At Spühler Rechtsanwälte, your case is comprehensively documented electronically. This means that all paper files are also digitized and stored electronically. The data is stored on our own specially secured server, to which only our employees and no third parties (including IT support) have access.

During the management of the mandate, you will always receive all documents we receive for your files.

You can inspect your electronic file at any time.

Your data will be archived by Spühler Rechtsanwälte exclusively in electronic form for at least 10 years after the conclusion of your case and then deleted without notification.

Contact your lawyer in Zurich now without obligation