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You know you might need a divorce lawyer, but how do you go about finding the one that's right for you? Google? Phone a friend? Your cousin the real estate attorney? And even if you've got the name of a divorce lawyer, how do you find out if she's qualified and if you can work well together?
You and your divorce attorney need to be on the same page. So here are five questions to ask during your initial consultation to see if you've found the best divorce lawyer for you.
A divorce attorney should be able to give you a good estimate of all of the paperwork, procedures, and time that will be involved in your divorce. Not all divorces are alike, but a good divorce lawyer should be able to spot the potential issues and the potential options for filing and court.
You need to know how much experience your lawyer has, not just with divorces but with all types of family disputes. And you need to know how that experience can be applied to your case. A good divorce attorney should be comfortable talking about past cases and results.
If you have children, they will be the biggest issue in your divorce. Ask the attorney about your custody options, what visitation means, and confirm that she can represent you in future custody and child support proceedings following the divorce.
Not all divorce proceedings need to take place in front of a judge. Mediation is an option, and, if you're on good enough terms with your spouse, you may be able to negotiate an out-of-court divorce agreement. And a good attorney can tell you which is right for your divorce.
As with any industry, you get what you pay for. Every divorce is unique and many divorce lawyers offer a few options when it comes to pricing, but any decent lawyer will be forthcoming about what your divorce may cost.
Your best bet is getting these questions answered sooner rather than later, so contact an experienced divorce attorney today.