Telephone Communication

COMMUNICATING BY TELEPHONE

Our goal is to keep you fully informed on your case and to answer any questions you may have. There are no stupid questions.

Please use these guidelines to help you make the most of our relationship.

What are the telephone hours for the office?
Our telephone hours are Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., closing from Noon to 1:00 p.m. for lunch and Friday from 9:00 a.m. to noon.

Telephone number: 850-462-3397

Wednesday and Friday afternoons have been designated "work days." This allows the office to work more efficiently on your case: drafting documents, returning phone calls, doing research, etc.

What are telephone appointments?
To maximize our ability to communicate with you about your case, we may set up a telephone appointment: a designated, calendared time for the Attorney and you to speak. This allows the Attorney to have your file in front of her and to prevent "telephone tag."

How soon can I expect a return call?
We always try to return calls the same day. You can expect a return call from someone in the office by 5:00 p.m. the following business day. The call may be returned by the legal assistant assigned to your case, and she may be able to answer your question. She may be able to set up a time for you to discuss your case with the Attorney. Since the Attorney, as part of her job, is scheduled out of the office (court hearings, depositions, mediations, continuing legal education), she may not be able to return your call for 1-5 days. The Attorney wants to be available to answer any legal questions you may have. It may be best to group any non-emergency questions and schedule a telephone conference. A scheduled telephone appointment would avoid the frustration of "phone tag." It would also allow the Attorney to give your questions her undivided attention.

What information is helpful when I call the office voice mail?
We understand that when you call, you are focusing on the questions you have or information you wish to pass on to us. Please remember to clearly identify yourself by giving your first and last name; provide your full telephone number each time you call, and briefly outline what you need. When clients do not leave their full name and telephone number, the Attorney or staff must stop working to research the client file to retrieve the telephone number. This takes up valuable time that could be used to work on your case. Every message is written down in detail so that each issue can be addressed. The messages are then filed in the client's file. Written messages are not filed until each issue has been addressed. Repeated calls and messages regarding the same issue are not necessary and will delay our response time.

What if I have an emergency and it is not during the designated telephone hours?
We understand that emergency situations do arise. If you are faced with an emergency situation, leave your detailed message following the instructions given above and we will make every effort to call you that same day.