Some divorcing couples think they have to find a divorce lawyer as quickly as possible. The first to file wins the day, so the old myth goes. That’s never actually been true.
Regardless of whether you’re the plaintiff or defendant, the best attorney is the one who takes the time to learn you, your case, and who helps you work toward the right set of priorities. In the following article, we’ll be helping you pick the best for your situation based on five key principles.
Ready to meet one of the best divorce attorneys in Huntsville? Learn more by visiting Charlotte Christian online or giving her a call today, and see what the firm can do for your case.
1. Start Online
The Internet isn’t your best bet for picking an attorney, but it’s a great place to start. That’s because it is an invaluable tool that can instantly connect you to attorneys who specialize in divorce, especially those practicing in your area.
Still, it’s a serious decision that demands a lot of consideration. Therefore, it’s best to look at your online search as a starting point. When you do find a promising divorce lawyer, start a list and glance over things like social media following, online reviews, and how well he or she has responded to any criticisms.
2. Listen For Referrals
Another aspect of hiring a lawyer to take into consideration is the word of people you trust. Have you had any friends or family members who have gone through a divorce? What was their experience with their attorney and the overall outcome?
Most people (about 51 percent) make spending decisions based on referrals. The word of a trusted person goes much further than any flashy digital or physical marketing ever could. Definitely put out some feelers with people you love.
Maybe they haven’t gone through what you’re going through, but they have someone in their lives who did. A second-hand referral through the right contact can be just as encouraging.
3. Make a List of Attorneys to Contact
Divorce law is a different area of practice than other fields of law. You’ll want to ensure that everyone you’re considering falls into that area.
To help keep up, start a physical list. You can either do this on paper or on a phone/computer application.
As you’re building this list, you may also want to list criteria important to you in making the final decision. Some of these criteria will come to you through the marketing materials of said attorneys. Others will be deeply personal based on the outcome you want for your case.
4. Ask the Right Questions
Which attorneys give you the best vibe? Before you can make that determination, you’ll need to brush off your inner interrogator. You’ll probably have lots of questions.
That’s okay. You can never have too many if it gives you the clarity you need to proceed with one of the most important decisions of your life. Here are four to get you started.
What Is the Timeline?
From the beginning, you’ll want to know when the process will end. It helps you work toward that goal with the right frame of mind.
Just be mindful that there are a number of things that can happen to either shorten or prolong the divorce. By and large, the less conflict you have, the faster it will be. Have your attorney give you worst-case scenarios, though, so you can better manage your expectations.
How Long Have You Practiced?
This is an important question for a number of reasons. It allows you to go forward knowing that you have real experience and knowledge answering on your behalf. Furthermore, it can highlight the nuance of family law practice, as in has the attorney ever worked on a case like yours before?
What Is the Best Form of Communication?
It’s easy to grow concerned when an attorney seemingly drops off the map. As someone going through a divorce, you’re always anticipating the next shoe to drop.
Attorneys who fail to keep in touch with their clients, or who offer contact methods that seem more like buffers than direct connections, do little to build one’s confidence. Ask your attorney what to expect as the best form of communication.
Additionally, leave their office knowing the method they typically use to communicate with clients. The more you know, the easier it will be to stay calm and at peace when you have questions or concerns.
What Strategy Best Suits My Case?
This is a big one. Many divorce cases are settled amicably, and that’s the best way of doing it if you and your ex can learn to give a little bit.
Some divorces don’t go so easily, though. Those deserve a more hard-nosed approach. Ideally, you want an attorney who works toward amicably settling the case, but who knows how to take off the gloves if the situation is unmanageable.
Talk this over with your attorney at length. They will be able to tell you what actions to take, evidence to compile, etc., if the situation calls for it.
5. Look For Someone Who Helps You Prioritize
As we’ve discussed, referrals are the easiest way of finding your attorney. They’re not the sole criteria, though. In addition to the questions listed above, you’ll want someone who helps you set your priorities in three key areas.
The cost of a divorce lawyer can get quite expensive. If saving money is a major motivator, then you’ll want an attorney who helps you commit to a strategy that gets you there. Ensure he or she is communicative in the overall costs, as well as when certain actions will require additional payment.
Sometimes you might not know what you want the most from your divorce. A quality attorney will help steer you in the right direction strategically, away from revenge and toward things like custodial and financial best practices.
The psychological aspects of a divorce can take a toll if you let them. Your attorney isn’t a substitute for a good counselor, but they should help you through their wealth of experience dealing with divorce clients manage the taxes that this process can place on you.
Need More Help to Find a Divorce Lawyer?
The goal is not to find a divorce lawyer as quickly as you can. It’s to find the one who has your best interests at heart and who has the experience to get you what you need.