If you're looking for a divorce lawyer, it's important that you do your research and choose carefully. Your lawyer will represent you during the process of dissolving your marriage, dividing your property and resolving custody matters. It is difficult to know who to choose.
You may have had family or friends who have been divorced. Even if their situation was different than yours, ask how their divorce was handled and whether they have recommendations. You can also contact your state or local bar association for referrals. There may be specific referral programs in your area to help you find a divorce lawyer. Many firms offer a free initial consultation, but ask before you schedule the first appointment.
You should hire a lawyer who is experienced in divorce cases similar to yours. Before consulting with or hiring a lawyer, think about how you want the divorce to be handled. Will it be a bitter fight or a relatively friendly agreement on the issues? What are you most concerned about? The division of property? Custody issues? Ask your prospective attorney how many cases he or she has handled involving those particular issues.
Cost is another important factor. Fees vary among divorce lawyers. Before hiring, make sure you understand the fee structure and billing practices, including fees for associates, retainers, and any additional fees and costs. Are there additional fees and costs you should be prepared to pay? Ask to review a written fee schedule in advance.
Finally, it is essential that you and your lawyer be able to communicate effectively. Divorce is very traumatic, so you should always be able to ask questions and feel comfortable discussing issues with your lawyer. There are no guarantees in divorce, but your lawyer can give you options and advice.
Choose a divorce lawyer who is experienced, professional, and responsive. Do your research, listen to your instincts and always choose someone you trust.