When divorce seems to be the ultimate destiny of a crippled marriage, the blame game is of no value then. Why always end up acrimoniously? Though the loss is irrevocable, still there’s much more left to move on.
The shattered family, though resented and emotionally chaotic, must seek for some appropriate professional help to get over with the divorce. A family law attorney is of much help in such a case. There are a number of legal issues associated with a divorce. Child custody, child support, alimony, property distribution, debts allocation and many others have yet to be decided. An expert attorney plays the role of not just a lawyer but a mediator and an advisor to guide the unfortunate family with the best possible solutions.
Tips for Selecting the Best Family Law Attorney
These family law attorneys might have their own practice or associated with a law firm. But choosing one best family law attorney for your unique case might be a difficult task. Remember, the legal procedures are quite complicated, time consuming and nerve wrecking. Selecting the best one for your case is essential to save you from any more hassles. You must be keen to know what must be considered while choosing a family law attorney. Below are few tips to help you with this selection.
1. Clarify your Needs
Before proceeding for hiring an attorney, think through the way you want to pursue your case. Your attitude towards settling the issue, budget and nature of case matter the most. If you are willing to negotiate with your soon-to-be ex-spouse over several important matters, an uncontested divorce may be the right approach for you. But if your property matters and child custody issues are complicated and require a decision through a judge, the contested divorce is the right call.
Whether contested or uncontested, the clarity of your needs is therefore very important to choose a family law attorney. Each lawyer has his/ her expertise in a particular domain. Matching your lawyer with your needs and situation is a must for an effective litigation process. Also, you need to give due consideration to your personal preferences including gender, personality and of course fees of the lawyer. Remember, they are the legal advisors not psychopaths who can deal with your frustration and anger. Once your needs are clear to you, the ultimate goal setting for your case will be easy.
2. Do your own Research
Don’t rush for hiring a big shot lawyer just because of his fame. It’s rather important to do your own research prior to a final decision. In this regard, it is advisable to meet and discuss with those friends or kinsmen who have gone through the experience of divorce. Ask them in detail about the family law attorney and the process they adopted for their case. Remember, each situation is unique and no two scenarios can be related together. The lawyer hired through such personal references can be more reliable for you. The other way to research about them is internet. Local Bar Associations can also provide you with the information about family law attorneys.
3. Plan out a Preliminary Meeting with Few Lawyers
Once you are clear about your needs and done with an initial research, short list at least 3 lawyers to consider for your case. It is advisable to plan a meeting with each of them for a better understanding prior to a decision. But don’t go unprepared for this meeting. Rather develop a thorough check list that gives you a quick overview afterwards. While you get the opportunity for an initial consultation, don’t forget to ask essential questions including lawyer’s experience, fees and expertise in a particular domain of cases.
4. Look out for Attorney’s Style
Your observation regarding the lawyer’s personality and style will be very important guide for making a right choice. Few are famous for aggressive style, while others might have a soft nature. Whatever is the style, it must make the client confident and comfortable. It is important for you to realize that the legal process will be a long journey. Your compatibility with the lawyer will be very helpful during the course.
5. Beware of Fancy Promises
Steer clear from the lawyers who are too good to be true. Remember, nothing is guaranteed in the legal process. So if an attorney is giving you high hopes and making fancy promises, don’t believe it. Some
lawyers, while convincing you to hire them, share confidential information of other clients with you. A rule of thumb here: if he’s doing it to others, he’ll do it with you too.
6. Don’t Compromise on Attorney’s Competence
Divorce is a life changing decision. Hence, it must not be handled carelessly by an incompetent or irrelevant attorney. The more the attorney is competent in terms of technical knowledge and his rapport with the judge, the better will be the execution of case. Do watch out for his accreditations and certifications that guarantee his expertise. Never forget to have a background investigation about the lawyer’s credibility in the industry as well.
7. Make Sure of Lawyer’s Availability for you and Case
There are going to be many tough paths throughout the journey of your case. And you require to be well prepared to face these ups and downs. Make sure you hire one such attorney who is conveniently available to guide you and attend hearings on a regular basis. The more he/ she needs to travel, the more you will be charged in the fees. Each penny of yours worth a million. Don’t waste it over the attorney fees alone. You’ll have a lot many expenses to bear, not just a case fees.
8. Make a Final Choice by Yourself
After all your satisfaction and homework, be confident in making a final choice of a family law attorney. Your research and personal investigations will bring up factual data in front of you. But that must not be the sole basis of your decision. Listen to your gut feeling. Your sixth sense can help you reach out to the lawyer best suited to your needs, style and situation. Most importantly, don’t let others dictate your decision. Only you’ll be going under the trial, so rely on your judgment for selecting a lawyer for yourself.
The Final Word
The process of divorce is not going to be a bed of roses for you and family. But a supportive, competent and an honest family law attorney can ease out the course for you. These tips will definitely help you in making a right choice for hiring a divorce lawyer.
Follow these tips and make a smart decision for your case. All the very Best to you!!
Sarah Campbell is a former paralegal who enjoys writing about family law and related topics, she currently handles the content for DivorceYes. Her extensive experience as a paralegal to some of the top law firms has given her a sound understanding of matters relating to family law.