Going through a divorce, custody case, or difficult adoption process is taxing and stressful. Having an excellent family lawyer in your court who has your back and can give you the best chance for success makes all the difference.
Choosing family lawyers is not something to take lightly. Family law involves sensitive and personal matters, and there’s oftentimes a lot to lose.
That’s why you need the best possible family lawyer to help you navigate through trying times. Check out these 7 factors to consider when choosing the right lawyer for you and your case.
1. Referrals, References and Reviews
Family law covers a broad subject matter. For this reason, you’ll find that many people in your life have a family lawyer. When you’re choosing the best for you, start your search by talking to trusted friends, family members, and acquaintances.
Get some referrals from people close to you and speak to them about their attorneys. Ask them about their experience, and whether they recommend the attorney.
Once you have a few referrals you can turn to the online community. Most law firms and lawyers will have a website and a review section. Read through these and see what their clients have to say about them.
You can also ask the lawyers that you’re considering to provide references that you can check.
2. Family Case Experience
There are plenty of options for lawyers and it can be quite overwhelming. You want to ensure that you find an attorney that specializes in family law and has experience dealing with cases similar to yours.
Just as you wouldn’t ask a plumber to fix your car, you shouldn’t expect a criminal lawyer to be able to effectively handle a family law case.
Look for a lawyer that has a good record of family law cases and successes. The more experience they have, the better for you.
Check out Kemp Ruge & Green Law Group for an example of an excellent firm that specializes in family law.
It’s all good and well if you find the perfect lawyer that ticks all the boxes. But if they aren’t readily available when you need them, this is going to be a big obstacle in your legal processes.
Talk to your lawyer and find out how many cases they’re busy with at the moment, and the sort of availability you can expect from them. How often will they be able to meet with you, for example? Will they be available at the drop of a hat when you need legal counsel, or should you expect to wait weeks for a meeting?
This is especially important if you have a time-sensitive case that needs immediate attention.
4. Comparing Lawyer Fees
Unfortunately, budget limitations will always be an influencing factor when choosing an attorney. You’ll likely have some kind of budget and you’ll need to find the best lawyer within a range that you can afford. First of all, determine a budget so that you can search within it.
Next, ask the lawyer for a breakdown of expected fees. Most lawyers charge by the hour but they can try to give you a broad estimate.
If you’re very concerned about your budget then try to seek out a lawyer who charges a fixed rate, or see if you can negotiate with a lawyer about a fixed rate instead of per hour.
5. Ability to Communicate
It’s so important that you choose a lawyer that has good interpersonal skills and can communicate effectively. They should be able to explain everything to you in a way that you’ll understand and maintain open communication channels.
The last thing you want is to have to squeeze information out of your lawyer, to always be asking questions, feeling unsure about the process. Communication skills are one of the most important characteristics to look for that will make you feel comfortable and at ease.
6. Accuracy and Honesty
The moment a lawyer makes huge claims and promises, turn around and walk out of the door. While you want a lawyer who is confident in their abilities and is committed to working hard to succeed, you also want someone who is accurate, honest, and realistic.
Rather than telling you what you want to hear, a family attorney should be able to evaluate a situation and make realistic estimations. You need to know where you stand and an accurate and honest lawyer will always let you know where that is.
7. Personal Compatibility
This is something that many people overlook when choosing a lawyer but it’s actually a very important consideration. You’ll be spending a lot of time with your lawyer dealing with sensitive and personal issues. It’s important that you find someone that you feel comfortable with.
You want a lawyer that you can trust, and with who you have a rapport. Trust your instincts and your first impressions of the lawyers you meet. It’s okay to look for someone of a certain gender or age if you think that will help you relate with them more.
Your relationship with your lawyer is something you shouldn’t take lightly. It will play a part in your mental and emotional health as well as the success of the case.
Choosing Family Lawyers is a Big Decision
Choosing family lawyers can feel overwhelming. It’s a big decision that can have a significant impact on your life. Take your time to make sure you find the best person for the job. Ask for recommendations, check references and reviews, and find someone that you can trust.
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