Going through a divorce can take its toll both physically and emotionally. It affects not only those who are getting divorced, but everyone in the family, particularly children. No matter what reasons you have for coming to this decision, the first, and most important step is finding a divorce attorney who will represent and guide you through the legal process of getting a divorce. Here are a few tips that may help you in your search for a divorce lawyer:
Count on Friends and Family
Sadly, with the divorce rate what they are, you probably know at least one friend or family member who has gone through divorce. Ask how they handled it, if they can give you any advice, or if they can recommend a good divorce lawyer. Though you probably don’t want to discuss your personal affairs, close friends and family can most likely provide the most helpful, as well as honest, advice.
Know what you Need
Before you can choose an attorney, you have to know how you want your case to be handled. Is your divorce a mutual agreement with few hard feelings or is it one sided and likely to be messy? In either case, you will want an attorney who will keep your wants and needs in mind. You may also have a gender or age preference. Many who go through divorce prefer an attorney of the same sex or general age as themselves. These preferences are very reasonable, but they should be kept in mind when choosing.
Form a Budget
Before you can choose a divorce lawyer, you must know what sort of budget you have to work with. Depending on individual attorney and the firm, rates can be very steep. Rates can also depend on how successful or well-known the attorney or firm is. Beware of being taken in by advertisements however. Lawyers or firms offering rates too good to be true are often just that. While the most expensive lawyer isn’t necessarily the best, those who promise amazingly low rates are often not what they seem.
Take Advantage of Free Consultations
During your search for the right divorce lawyer, you will often notice that many firms and lawyers offer a free initial consultation. Take advantage of those offers when you find them. Even if the lawyer doesn’t turn out to be right, you aren’t losing any money by speaking with them. Take a list of questions with you to the meeting. Be sure to ask how many years of experience they have, what type of cases they’ve worked with, etc. There are no unimportant questions to ask. It’s always better to ask and be over informed that to remain silent and have unpleasant surprises later.
A divorce is stressful enough without lacking faith in your attorney. Take your time and find the right attorney for you case. Don’t be afraid to keep searching until you find someone you’re satisfied with because at a time as stressful as this, you need someone competent in your corner.