If you're going through a split in your marriage, you've probably been in better states of mind. Unfortunately, this can lead you to make some poor decisions about whom you hire as your divorce attorney. Make no mistake about it, this is an important decision, and you need to clear your mind as well as possible before making it. It should be done soberly and with thorough contemplation. There are a few reasons that this decision needs such careful consideration. You don't want to make a contentious situation worse by introducing a shark into a kiddie pool; nor do you want a lamb when what you need is a lion. Knowing which battle you're fighting is an important consideration. Here are four others.
You can't beat experience when it comes to the most important considerations. It matters more than where a divorce attorney got their law degree, and it matters much more than how good their television commercials are. Not only will they know what to expect from the court system, they will be able to anticipate moves by your spouse before they are made. This is the kind of thing that only time can teach, so choose someone who has the background.
Testimonials and Recommendations
No, not those one-sentence testimonials that any divorce lawyer can put up on their website. You want to ask for the names and numbers of prior clients so you can ask them about their experiences directly. If satisfied, many clients will be happy to go on record for their lawyer. If no one will, what does that say? If you can't get that, at least make sure that someone you know can recommend the attorney you're thinking of hiring. Otherwise, what criteria are you using?
It can't be overstated how important good communication is when hiring a divorce lawyer. It goes without saying that an attorney should have excellent communication skills to begin with, but you have to make sure that translates from the courtroom into the office. You'll want to know exactly where your case is at all times. Thankfully, this is a fairly easy trait to discern from an initial consultation.
Of course, it would be naive to assume that anyone would hire a divorce lawyer without making money one of their prominent considerations. While it would be unfair to say that you get what you pay for-there are many excellent attorneys who charge clients reasonable rates-you don't want to hire the cheapest person in town. Shop around if you must, but understand that hiring an attorney isn't cheap under the best of circumstances.