Selecting a well-qualified family law attorney sometimes challenges clients. These eight guidelines may help avoid disappointment:
One: Make Sure Your Attorney Holds a Law License in Good Standing
Verify the type and scope of you attorney’s license with your state bar association before attending an initial consultation. You can complete this step free of charge. Only licensed attorneys can practice law and represent clients. Try and find an attorney who graduated from an ABA-accredited law school.
Two: Find an Attorney with Experience in the Family Law Area
Seek out an attorney specializing in the field of family law. Usually, previous experience handling similar types of cases proves helpful.
Three: Establish Rapport
Try and locate a family law attorney with whom you enjoy good rapport. You may need to discuss confidential information with your attorney.
Four: Check Professional References
Verify professional references supplied by your attorney prior to the initial consultation. An attorney won’t divulge the names of other clients to you as a matter of confidentiality, but will furnish references that include banking officers and former law school professors.
Five: Discuss Payment Issues Initially
Many family law attorneys won’t charge you for the initial consultation, but the attorney will typically assess a fee for other time spent on the case, including time spent in subsequent phone consultations with you. It makes sense to discuss fees, expenses, charges and any other billing issues during the initial consultation.
Six: Always Tell Your Attorney The Truth
Never lie to your family law attorney about specific facts involved in your case. You should only hire an attorney with whom you can enjoy complete candor. If you don’t trust the attorney, consider taking your business elsewhere.
Seven: Expect to Provide Input in Your Case to Your Attorney
Try and find an attorney who expects to communicate with you periodically during the course of your case. Events sometimes occur which require renewed consultations between attorneys and their clients. An attorney who meets with you once and then sees you again only in court likely risks incomplete case preparation.
Eight: Appreciate That Attorneys Cannot Guarantee Outcomes
Don’t trust any attorney who assures you of a guaranteed outcome in your case. Your counsel may confirm that you possess a strong case, but that fact alone won’t assure a victory. Legal counsel should advise you honestly and represent your interests aggressively. These professionals cannot (and should not) guarantee specific results.
By developing a good working relationship with your family law attorney, you’ll likely enhance your peace of mind about important legal issues that impact your household. Giving careful attention to the selection of the best law firm for your purposes often proves vitally important.