It's hard to choose the right family law lawyer for your case. The process can be challenging and stressful, especially when you are not sure what you're looking for.
Throughout the pages of our website, we have worked hard to bring you useful information that will help you learn the law and also help you choose the best family lawyer for your particular case.
In this article, we are going to review some of the traits that we believe are important and should be part of the right family law attorney.
Think of this as the 7 golden traits.
1. The lawyer's integrity
Integrity is a big deal and, perhaps to your surprise, a necessary part of any family lawyer you hire. What do we mean by integrity? Simple. A family law lawyer should be honest with you about the strengths and weaknesses of your divorce case. I swear, some family lawyers should have pom poms in their office. All they do is cheer-lead, just to get you to retain them. That is foolish on their part and dangerous on yours.
Imagine going to a doctor. You know you are ill but you don't know what is wrong with you. Imagine then the doctor not telling you what is medically wrong with you but instead telling you that you are fine…would you feel better in that moment? Sure. Is that in your best interest? No, not unless you don't mind becoming more ill.
It's not that different with choosing the right lawyer. How are you going to know what the right direction and strategy is on your family law case if your lawyer only gives you part of the information you need? How are you going to set reasonable expectations? How are you going to avoid being surprised in court when results occur that you never saw coming?
These are not good things and when you consult with a family lawyer who assures your everything is fine, you have nothing to worry about and makes you promises that (just using some common sense) don't sound right, run the other way.
2. The family law lawyer's diligence
You can tell the diligence of your lawyer from the moment you call him or her. Did the lawyer take your call or did you talk with a secretary? Did the lawyer take the time to speak with you about the issues by phone or just got right to how much he or she would charge? Did the in person consultation happen? Did the lawyer go over the facts, the law and the issues?
When you are choosing the right family attorney for your case, keep these things in mind. They are a "preview" of the type of diligence you can expect when you hire him or her. Don't get diligence from the moment you call? Move on.
3. The lawyer's communication skills
Lawyers, as a profession, have a poor reputation for their communication skills. You know why that is? Because they deserve it. Your family law attorney should be accessible to you. When you call, he or she should take the call. You should not be talking with the lawyer's secretary or paralegal more than the lawyer. Legal advice should come from the lawyer. Your lawyer should email you. Your lawyer should be in regular contact about the status of your case.
4. The lawyer's objectivity
Objectivity is more than giving you the strengths and weaknesses of your case. It is also making sure the analysis of your case includes the reasonable options the family court has. The best lawyers will not look at your divorce case and its issues in a vacuum. Instead, they will understand the court has "discretion" on certain issues and there is rarely a black or white, clear-cut issue in family law. That discretion means options and it is important your lawyer give you those options.
Does that mean they can predict results? Of course not. Nobody can and nobody should. But it does mean an objective look at the facts, evidence and issues can prepare you for different scenarios and help you and your lawyer plan accordingly.
5. The family law lawyer's patience
6. The family law lawyer document preparation skills
By the time you walk into court, your lawyer or law firm should have prepared all of your paperwork. Did you know a lot of times, the family law judge has made his or her decision on the case before you walk in? Did you know that decision is often made based on the paperwork submitted?
Don't underestimate the importance of the document preparation in your divorce case…and if you hire a lawyer who has his or her secretary or paralegal do all of the work and he doesn't even read it carefully and make sure it is accurate, complete and properly advocates your case, you should consider changing lawyers.
7. The family law lawyer skill and experience inside the courtroom
Here are three ways to know if you have a talented courtroom, divorce lawyer.
a. Look at what his or her actual clients say about the lawyer;
b. Look at the types of case results the lawyer achieves;
c. Go see the lawyer in court.
Sound easy? It is.
Do you need an initial consultation with an experienced and skilled family law lawyer?
If so, our lawyers are ready to help you. Contact our law firm today for a consultation. We will get your case on the right track.