Choosing someone to represent you in a divorce case is a critical process. You need someone you can establish close, meaningful and long-lasting relationships with. Here are the key steps you need to take to get the right lawyer for your divorce.
Ask for Recommendations
You can ask for recommendations from friends or workmates who have worked with a divorce lawyer before. You can also get names of suitable lawyers from other professionals such as accountants, psychotherapists and members of the clergy. Most of them have interacted with competent and trustworthy family lawyers in the course of their duties. You can also check your state bar for names of certified divorce lawyers in their database.
Look at the Lawyer’s Credentials
Everyone who aspires to be a lawyer in the United States must attend a certified law school and pass the American Bar Association’s examination before being allowed to practice. They must also have certifications from relevant regulatory and professional bodies. Ensure the lawyer you choose has all the certificates required in your state. You should also determine whether the lawyer has published books, articles or treaties related to family law. These are prime indicators of the lawyer’s competence and specialty.
Check the Lawyer’s Reputation
You need to find out what type of person you are getting into business with. You want to make sure that the lawyer does not have any disciplinary case due to professional malpractice. You can check the lawyer’s reputation on the bar association’s website. You simply search the person by name, and his details will emerge.
Interview at Least Three Lawyers
Identify at least three lawyers you think are most suited for the job and schedule interviews with each one of them. The interviews can be done remotely or at their offices. An interview will give you a perfect platform to determine whether the lawyer meets your demands. Ask him about the approach he will take when handling the case and whether he will work with other attorneys. Let him brief you on his past work records, including the number of cases he has successfully handled. Look around his office to see whether he has the right licenses and certificates. Great companies like The Colwell Law Group usually hang their licenses and certification documents in a place where clients can see. The absence of a license at the office is a red flag you cannot afford to ignore.
Ask for References
A good lawyer should give you a list of references. Make sure he gives you at least five references. Contact these clients and ask them about their overall experience with the lawyer. Ask them how long it took the lawyer to handle their cases and whether he met their expectations. Make sure they give you an honest opinion about the lawyer to help you make a good decision.
Consider Personal Compatibility
A divorce case usually takes months or even years to handle. You want to make sure you hire someone you can relate with for such long duration. You should be comfortable around him and communicate with each other easily.