By: Rodney Jacob of Calvo & Clark, LLP
It’s a commonly accepted principle of the legal practice: you generally don’t look for a lawyer unless something heavy is going on in your life. For example, you’re getting a divorce; someone close to you has died and you need to file a probate case; you need to sue somebody, or worse, someone is suing you. It is often the case that when you’re looking for a lawyer or information about the legal system, you’re already going through a situation that is taking up a good deal of your time and attention. So the last thing you want is further complications because you don’t know how to find a good lawyer or information about how to proceed in your case. If you find yourself in this predicament, there are some options for where to start the search for legal information and assistance.
First, the Guam Law Library is open to the public and contains stacks of books of general information about law topics. The library also keeps collections of local and federal laws, opinions from Guam’s Attorney General, and Guam specific court cases and administrative rules and regulations. Much of this information can also be found at the website for the Supreme Court of Guam, Compiler of Laws at www.justice.gov.gu/CompilerofLaws.
Many people opt to file or appear for cases in traffic or small claims court without an attorney. If you need information on the rules or forms that are used in these specific courts, you can find them at Superior Court information counter or at the website for the Unified Courts of Guam at www.justice.gov.gu/superior.html. The rules of practice for general civil actions, as well as information on court operations, are also available at the site.
Finally, if you know you need a lawyer but don’t know how to find one, the Guam Bar Association has the Lawyer Referral Service. The Referral Service is offered as a public service to the community by the Guam Bar. The program provides potential clients with the names of Guam attorneys who have expressed an interest in specific areas of practice. You can get more information at guambar.org