Before you meet with the attorney, you will be creating the following documents:
List of Actors
Timeline is sorted by date and contains information about
Goals and Objectives
Keep in mind, you are gathering information about the ACTORS and ACTIONS which brought you into the law office.
ACTORS are people, businesses or organizations. Actors act.
Documents are any files which would prove that an ACTOR committed or knew about an ACTION. Documents are evidence. The documents will need to be included in the timeline.
Information about the Actors
Grab together all the information you have about the Actors and Actions.
Print out the digital files.
Make copies of any web pages or other online content.
Try to get contact information for each Actor.
Get names, addresses, emails and phone numbers as best you can.
What did this Actor Do? or What does this Actor know?
Is this Actor sympathetic or hostile to your case?
You may want to consider the resources of a particular Actor. (Could the Actor afford to pay a judgment if you win?)
Actions and Documents
Sort all the documents into date order. Put the earliest documents on the bottom and the newest documents on top. You will bring the documents in with you to the office.
Create a list of all of the documents.
I usually suggest putting this information into a spreadsheet.
The columns would include Date / Name of Document / Short Description.
You've now created a table of contents for your documents and the start of your timeline.
Next add any other dates or times you know about into the timeline.
Keep in mind, that Documents usually have dates, but you may not remember exactly when an action was committed.
So, put the Actions in as best order as you can. If you don't know the date, give me your best guess, for example, "Spring 2009".
If you have any damages that are not included in the timeline, add those.
Also, add any other relevant information as best you can.
What other evidence or information do you think is available?
Do you think some other evidence exists that would prove your case?
Who has it?
How would we get it?
What is it?
Most importantly, what do you want? What would make you happy? What is your goal? What questions do you have?