How to Choose a Family Law Attorney
How to Choose a Family Law Attorney
If you are faced, or potentially faced, with a family law matter, one of the first decisions you must make is choosing a family law attorney to advise you. For many people, even the thought of searching for a family law attorney can be an uncomfortable experience. But this is an immensely important decision for you, your family and many times even your extended family, and it deserves your patient and thorough examination of all the relevant factors. The following is a summary of some important factors to consider in selecting the right attorney for you:
A Personally Tailored Family Law Process
It is important that you understand all of your family law process options. Absent a signed, written agreement to the contrary, your family law process could be filed with the district clerk’s office in the same manner as personal injury and breach of contract lawsuits. Before you commit to a process, be sure your attorney explains to you the pros and cons of each family law process option (including litigation, collaborative divorce, early intervention mediation, etc.) and helps you to evaluate the best fit for your family’s needs.
Experience is never a guarantee for success, but inexperience can certainly invite unwanted anxiety to your family law matter. Your attorney should have experience in both the subject matter of family law and in the available process options. In addition to total years of family law experience, consider the percentage of the attorney’s practice that is devoted solely to family law. You may also need to consider the attorney’s experience with a specific aspect of your family law matter (e.g., a military divorce, a family business, etc.). Also, look at the attorney’s experience and training in the various family law processes. Finally, be sure you understand who will be handling the majority of your family law matter, i.e. the attorney, an associate attorney, or a paralegal.
A good personality fit is often difficult to describe but easy to recognize, and the right personality is an essential quality for your family law attorney. Your attorney will have a powerful voice and influence on the future of your family, and it can be difficult to change attorneys along the way. So before you make your decision, be sure to have a face to face consultation with each family law attorney that meets your criteria. At the end of your interview process, take a moment to assess your comfort level before making your selection.
Affordability of a family law attorney cannot be considered alone, however, you should be mindful of the attorney’s fees. Family law attorneys charge various hourly rates and retainers, and not every family law matter shares the same level of complexity and conflict, nor requires equivalent expertise. You need to feel confident in your family law attorney’s capability and in your ability to pay him or her to complete the job.
If you would like to schedule a consultation with one of our family law attorneys, please call us at (210) 828-2058 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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