If you’re contemplating divorce, you’re probably overwhelmed with details. Hiring a lawyer may feel like just another in an almost endless stream of task related to your divorce, but it’s one of the most decisions you’ll make in the process. The right lawyer can really help and relieve some of the stress you are facing. So, how do you find the right lawyer?
Identify several potential attorneys and interview them. Yes, this takes some time, but it’s worth it. You need to find someone who specializes in the type of divorce you need. Your lawyer needs to be local, because he or she needs to be familiar with the local court system. It’s important to have an attorney who’s familiar with the family law judge who’s likely to handle your case.
Most divorce cases don’t go to court, but if you know your case will, you need a lawyer with a lot of courtroom experience. If you’re going to court, you’ll probably want to check the attorney’s trial record and history of success in the courtroom.
It’s not uncommon for lawyers to provide an initial consultation, which gives you a wonderful opportunity to find out more about your potential lawyer. You’ll want to know how much experience each lawyer has, particularly in areas where you need expertise. If you expect to need to hire a forensic investigator, for instance, you’ll need to find a lawyer who has one on staff or who can refer you to one.
You will also need to know what the fees are for each lawyer you speak to. Most lawyers want a retainer–-a portion of the payment in advance––and most charge by the hour. If the lawyer has colleagues who are likely to be handling aspects of your case, ask to meet them too. Be sure to verify how the use of these resources will affect your bill.
It’s important that you feel comfortable with your attorney. Your attorney will need personal information about you and your marriage, and you need to hire someone you feel you can confide in. You shouldn’t use your lawyer as a therapist, but your lawyer should be someone you feel at ease with. And your lawyer’s style should match your own. If you want a quiet amicable divorce, your town’s most aggressive attorney isn’t going to work.
Hiring just the right lawyer is an important step toward getting the divorce settlement you deserve. Please contact us today to learn more!