Whether you and your spouse have already made the decision to move forward with a divorce, or you are merely beginning to consider the prospect of dissolving your marriage, it is important to understand what to look for in a divorce attorney to ensure you are prepared if and when the time comes to hire one. Why is hiring the right attorney so critical? He or she is going to be the person you entrust with the task of protecting your rights an assets, which will ultimately pave the way for a better future in the next chapter of your life. With the right divorce attorney on your side, you can reduce the time, cost, and stress that is often associated with this process.
Below are some things you should consider when you begin looking for a divorce attorney to represent you:
- Amount of experience and areas of specialization: This should be at the top of your list when you are seeking legal representation for your divorce. An attorney who is extremely experienced, but does not specialize in cases that involve child custody disputes might not do you much good if you and your spouse have children and cannot agree on an arrangement. Additionally, when you narrow down your list and begin meeting with attorneys in person, you should ask what type of clients they generally represent and their rate of success. Some prospective clients are too shy to ask these questions, but remember, your future is at stake and this information will be vital for your decision-making process.
- Fee structure: Not all attorneys have the same fee structure, so do not assume that what one attorney charges or how they tally up fees will be identical to another attorney. Some charge at an hourly rate and might ask for a retainer, which is an upfront fee that is paid in advance, while others might base their fees on the anticipated settlement figure. Make sure you also understand what is included in their fees since some attorneys include other extra services, such as counselors or forensic appraisers.
- Reputation: There are a plethora of ways to go about finding a divorce attorney. You could make use of your personal network, ask friends and family, scour through online reviews, or even ask accountants or psychologists for recommendations. The benefit of a recommendation is that you will also learn a bit your prospective attorney and the reputation he or she has. Are you looking for an attorney who has a reputation for being aggressive or one who is committed to ensuring your marriage ends as amicably as possible? Depending on the results you would like to achieve, how your attorney operates might be a major factor in your decision.
- Personal compatibility: Throughout the course of your divorce, you are going to have to dive into a lot of personal details about your life and marriage with your spouse. If you are not comfortable with your attorney, this could end up becoming an unnecessarily difficult process, so do not underestimate the importance of feeling like you can open up to your divorce attorney. That said, you should also try to resist the temptation of treating your attorney as a therapist.
Divorce Attorneys in Jacksonville
If you are considering a divorce, now is the time to begin thinking about legal representation. At The Lasky Law Firm, our Jacksonville divorce attorneys can provide you with helpful and effective legal counsel to ensure you are able to quickly resolve any issues you might encounter as you move forward with the divorce process. We handle a vast range of family law matters, including child custody, alimony, and property division.
Contact our law firm today at (904) 297-2009 to schedule a consultation.