The divorce process can be challenging in and of itself. Going through a divorce requires most people to make significant choices and decisions about almost every area of their life as they knew it. To compound this stressful and decision ridden process is the very important decision of hiring the right divorce lawyer. No divorce client wants to go through the emotion ups and downs of the divorce process feeling alone or feeling as though your divorce lawyer does not know the best solutions and/or options to aggressively and knowingly take you through the divorce process.
Therefore, considering the magnitude of litigant’s seen in my office who expressed displeasure with their previous lawyer (and with the knowledge that many times there is no lawyer that would please some litigants in this difficult process), I have suggestions to enable you to select a divorce lawyer and evaluate what lawyer is best suited for you.
- Chose a lawyer who specializes and/or only practices in family law. Too often client’s come in half way through their divorce proceedings, completely lacking the knowledge of even where they are in the case, and many times because their previous lawyer simply lacked the expertise needed in this specialized area of the law. Google your perspective lawyers, read articles they have written, and do your research as to their experience in family law. From the specialized nature of divorce proceedings, to the ever changing forms associated with different docket numbers, and to the overall timing of the divorce process, having an attorney that specializes in family law alone can provide a significant advantage.
- Does your proposed lawyer know the Judges, the mediators, and other family law attorneys in the area. While, seemingly insignificant, hiring an attorney is familiar with the county your divorce is taking place in, the Judge’s generally assigned to the cases in that county, and the other people involved including your possible adversary, is incredibly helpful. Attorneys who specialize in family law are generally familiar with the Judge’s they appear before routinely, the colleagues they frequently work with, and can provide more personal guidance in this regard which can serve to provide you with a peace of mind.
- Communication: From the outset of the initial consultation and it is important to gage yourself and your comfort level with the consulted attorney. Did you feel comfortable sharing the information requested? Do you feel comfortable discussing the very personal issues that come up in family law. Most importantly, did you feel at ease being honest about those very difficult details. Regardless of your chosen lawyers professional expertise and reputation, if you are not comfortable being completely honest with the consulted attorney they are simply not for you.
- Trust: Pay attention during your consultation and be honest with yourself. Did you feel heard and did you feel as though the lawyer answered the questions asked honestly or did they seem distracted and rushed? Did you feel as though the lawyer understood your overall goals and honestly answered the questions asked- even if the answers were not what you wanted to hear? This is important because more often than not, clients come in with emotional issues and with positions that although make sense to them, are simply not in accordance with the law. The last thing any client needs is to be told “yes, yes, yes” and pay a fortune for legally unattainable goals.
While, there is no perfect science to choosing the best divorce lawyer for you, given the emotion involved in divorce as well as the extremely personal and sometimes embarrassing issues that can arise during the divorce process, it is incredibly important to hire an attorney who is specialized in the area of divorce so that they have the legal knowledge protect your rights as well as an attorney you trust to ensure the emotional aspects are dealt with properly as well. The above tips are simple guidance to ensuring the one decision that you feel content with during your divorce process is your choice of the right lawyer for you.
The experienced lawyers at the Martone Law Group can assist you in protecting your rights during the difficult process of divorce. In the event that you in the process of going through a divorce or beginning the process of filing for divorce, call Kelli M. Martone, Esq. at (856) 617-6700 to schedule your consultation today.