If you are thinking about divorce or in the middle of an epic battle with your soon-to-be-ex, there’s no question it can be an emotional and stressful experience.
One of the best things you can do to help yourself and your situation is to find and hire a quality divorce attorney. However, before you dive in and hire the first attorney you find, make sure you put effort into finding the right person for the job.
Learn about several important questions to ask before hiring a divorce attorney here.
1. Is Divorce/Family Law their Area of Expertise?
There are several “generalist” lawyers out there who practice in several areas of law. While this isn’t always a bad thing, it’s a good idea to find an attorney who focuses on matrimonial/family law exclusively. They are going to be updated and aware of the latest laws and nuances of this particular area.
2. Does the Attorney Prefer Litigation or to Settle the Case Amicably?
Each lawyer is going to have their own unique style. A litigator is going to love the fight and fight to win. The nature of this attorney is to go to court – it’s just what they do. While this is the case, it doesn’t mean this is what is best for your case or your situation.
If you go to court, the entire process is going to take longer and cost you more money. Any attorney who is fair and reasonable will try to solve divorce cases amicably – as this is what is in your best interest. While there may be situations where you have no choice but to fight in court, in most cases, there will be other methods and options to consider.
3. Do They Handle Mediation Often?
If the attorney answers “yes” to this, find out what their settlement rate is. A lawyer who participates in mediations often is one you should consider for your situation.
Remember, there are some courts that require all parties to attempt mediation in good faith – but this isn’t what is being discussed here. Ask if the attorney suggests mediation before the court requires it. Also, what is their rate of settling cases that actually go through mediation? If you find an attorney who mediates often, but doesn’t have a good success rate, it’s a red flag.
4. How Does the Attorney Bill Their Clients?
This is a crucial question. Most lawyers will bill you hourly. Usually, you will have to pay a significant retainer, which the lawyer will require upfront.
You need to find out if the attorney is also going to bill for each email or call. Find out if there are things you can do to keep the costs minimal. The more work that you do, the less that your lawyer has to do, and the less they will have to bill you for.
5. Will the Attorney Work on Your Divorce Case Personally?
Is the lawyer you are hiring a named partner of the firm or an associate. There are some firms that have associates and partners who will work under them. In many cases, more than one lawyer will “touch” your file during the course of your legal situation. There are some people who prefer a cheaper associate to work on their case because the cost is lower.
Finding an Attorney That is Right for You
When it comes to hiring a divorce attorney, there are more than a few factors to consider. Be sure to ask the questions here to help ensure you find the right attorney for your situation. To learn more, contact Lewert Law, LLC by calling (561) 544-6861.