Choosing the Right Attorney
We’ve all seen the ads online or in the back of the classified section of the newspaper, advertising “Quick and Easy Divorces for a Low, Low Price!”, and maybe you’ve even considered contacting them to handle your divorce. As alluring as an inexpensive attorney may be, there should be a warning sign flashing in your mind telling you to think twice. The low price they promise is used to reel you in before you are slammed with additional charges in the form of not only court fees, but also fees related to drafting custody or child support agreements and even division of assets. If your divorce is uncontested and there is no property or children in the picture, then sure, maybe one of these attorneys or firms will work for you. But, if you’re like millions of other couples heading into a divorce, your case won’t be as black and white. In this instance, it is best to do some research and hire an attorney who has the experience of handling in depth proceedings.
It is important to do your homework while looking to hire an attorney. Search online for attorneys who have jurisdiction in the county that your case will be filed. Ask your family members, friends, or co-workers who have gone through a divorce which firm they hired. Since these people care about you, they will be honest about their experience. Did their attorney drag their feet in an attempt to bill a higher amount? Your loved one will let you know! Or maybe their attorney was honest and the process was executed smoothly. Either way, your best interest will be kept in mind. If you do not know someone who is recently divorced, browse websites such as yelp.com or Angie’s List for unbiased reviews from current and former clients.
This may seem like a no-brainer, but make sure your divorce lawyer specialized in divorce. Many attorneys are general practitioners, which mean they handle a wide array of cases under the legal umbrella. A crucial factor to determining the outcome of your case is whether or not your attorney is an expert in the fields of matrimonial and family law. If they’re not and they’re more experienced in criminal defense, then you just might want to look elsewhere for representation.
If money is still a concern for you, you should consider mediation. Simply put, mediation is when you and your spouse sit down with your attorneys and a mediator and hammer out the details of the divorce settlement. For instance, you get to keep the house, but your spouse gets the car and exclusive use of the time share you two invested in. Mediation can also be used to create custody, support and visitation guidelines if there are children involved. This divorce strategy is great- if you two can come to an agreement. If you’re butting heads and disagree on many aspects of the potential settlement, then it is best to proceed with hashing out the details in court.
When it comes down to it, your attorney is going to be a major player in your divorce. He or she will be by your side, fighting along in the trenches if need be, in an attempt to emerge with a divorce settlement you are satisfied with. Whether you face a long battle, or simple need an advocate on your side during mediation, the lawyer you retain will greatly impact the end result. A passionate and experienced attorney with a proven track record can be your key to success in the divorce process.
Choose an attorney who will act as an advocate on your behalf.