What To Know Before You Hire An Attorney

There are so many things to consider when it comes to divorce, but before you do anything, here are some things to keep in mind before hiring an attorney.

Five things you should know before you hire an attorney to handle your divorce or modification case:

1.  Only a handful of attorneys are truly “family lawyers.”. Hire someone who  (a ) is certified in family law and/or mediation, (b)  has exerienced support staff, and. (c) will allow you to negotiate his/her retainer fee and hourly rates.  If you anticipate that your case will be litigious , do not hire a solo practitioner !

2.  If you believe that your divorce will be friendly, opt for mediation or collaborative law approach.

3.  Be wary of an excessively high “refundable” retainer, or one that debits the initial consultation as hours towards the retainer.  Your initial consultation, if you retain the attorney, should be absorbed by him/her as a courtesy.

4.  Don’t concern yourself with pedigree … Is the attorney well-respected in the legal community?  If your attorney has a bad reputation, that reputation likely carries over into the courtroom and may not work to your advantage.

5.  Consider hiring an advocate, who specializes in litigation strategies.    For a flat fee (usually $1,500), he/she will represent your interests by interfacing with your attorney on important legal issues, helping guide decisions based on many factors including financial outcomes.