The selection of a qualified attorney is an important matter. It is recommended that you do some research before selecting an attorney to represent your interests. References are generally a good source of information on the competency and reliability of an attorney's skills and practice. References can be sought from other attorneys, even if they practice in a different area of law or in a different jurisdiction. State bar associations are also an excellent source of referrals. Once you receive the name of an attorney, you can check out his or her qualifications in a legal publication called the Martindale-Hubbel. This is an attorney research directory that publishes information such as the attorney's education, areas of practice and a rating as to his or her legal ethics and competence. For more information on references, contact your local law school or a qualified legal counselor.