Respectable divorce lawyers will know every infinitesimal detail about the divorce laws in your state. It is extremely important to find an attorney who possesses this knowledge because it will ultimately determine the outcome of your case. Divorces involve a slew of issues, ranging from who will get the house to who gains custody of any children from the marriage.
In a world where finding a suitable lawyer can consist of looking in the yellow pages or reading a billboard, it is no wonder why case after case is drawn out over months at a time. Step one is to think about where you can find a good divorce lawyer. There are a few ways to find a divorce lawyer, including professional or personal recommendations.
If you saw a marriage counselor before deciding to divorce, the counselor can probably recommend a good divorce lawyer. The lawyer you use for other services, like estate planning, can also make recommendations. They have insider knowledge about which divorce lawyers have good court reputations. If you have friends who are recently divorced, they may be able to recommend their divorce lawyer.
Ask them to tell you honestly about their experience, what they liked and disliked, and whether, if they had to do it all over again, they would still use the same attorney. One thing to always remember when searching for divorce lawyers is you need to know how much you are able to spend and what kind of specialist you need for your situation. There are all types of specialists ranging from family law attorneys to custody lawyers and child support lawyers. When you are researching firms, you need to inquire how much a specialist costs and whether or not your case requires the use of one.
After you make that decision, you need to meet with the lawyer before signing any contracts. The attorney will be able to inform you of any specific divorce laws for your state regarding anything from property division to child custody laws. You may not feel comfortable with the first lawyer you interview, so plan to talk to at least two or three before making a choice. A lawyer needs to fit your personal style both in and out of court. If you feel intimidated by your lawyer, you could be putting yourself at risk of not having your voice heard in court. Every lawyer will approach a judge differently, and it is not uncommon to watch potential divorce lawyers in court in your initial search.
Always remember that, when you do choose an attorney, divulge all the necessary information they need for your case. If you leave anything out, your lawyer will not be fully prepared and it could hurt you during the divorce settlement. Another factor when choosing an attorney is the matter of their fees, disbursements, and billing arrangements.
Fees are different from one attorney to the next, and you should ensure you can afford them. One of the choices you will have to make is whether you want to work with someone from a large law firm or someone who is a sole practitioner. You should also find out how they bill for their services.
Some lawyers require you to pay fees up front, and then refund any excess payment. Other attorneys will allow you to pay as you go. Lawyers who rely on paralegals and other assistants may charge more than lawyers who do all the work alone. Researching the length of time an attorney has practiced can tell you how much he or she will charge.
Once a fee has been settled upon, check all the paperwork to make sure you aren't charged later for additional fees. When the unfortunate situation arises and you have to search for divorce lawyers, be sure to proceed with caution before making a final choice. Divorce lawyers can specialize in a variety of areas, so you need to know what your own situation requires before signing a contract. It is also important to trust the lawyer you will use because he or she will have to delve into personal information. If you don't trust the lawyer, you will not feel comfortable with the outcome of your divorce settlement.
Choosing the right attorney can determine if you gain a fair property division settlement or obtain joint legal custody for a child.
As a family counselor, Charles Sellestor has given many couples advice about finding good Sacramento family law. He often recommends Keegan & Myers, a Keegan & Myers firm who knows how to navigate the tricky terrain of child custody, division of retirement benefits, and other divorce issues.