DIVORCE is an enormous decision, and how you handle it can have long-lasting consequences for your entire life. Whatever side you’re on it’s important to consult with a professional legal counsel. If you’ve never had a divorce before, the process might seem daunting and uncomfortable prior to hiring an attorney for divorce it is important to conduct your own research to ensure you’re getting the best attorney for your specific situation. For instance If you or your soon-to-be ex is currently serving in the military, be sure you don’t employ an attorney for divorce who has no previous experience with divorce in the military. That is you require an attorney for divorce who is skilled in the aspects that make your life special to you.

Make sure you ask the right questions to ask to ensure that an attorney is qualified to manage your divorce situation. If the task of hiring an attorney for divorce is daunting and even a little scary now, think about making this list of questions that you can use as your primary guide. 01of 26

Table of Contents

Which divorce case have your handled?

Finding a divorce attorney to hire is like hiring an expert surgeon It is important to not choose someone who’s never been through this before. The process of getting divorced is stressful enough. The final thing you’ll be doing in addition to managing all the psychological and logistical consequences is to check your lawyer’s work over their shoulder to be sure that everything is handled in a proper manner. Remember, you’rethe client. 02of 26

How many of those did you settle without going to the court?

In the ideal scenario, you’ll want to stay out of the court system to avoid any tension and an extended agreement. Settlement outside of court means that you’ve reached an agreement, so you should find a competent divorce lawyer who has been able to settle out of court often is an excellent indicator to consider. 03of 26

Do you practice collaborative divorce?

Like settling outside of the court system A co-parenting divorce removes an end to the “let’s fight!” mindset aside, to ensure the spouse and you are able to come to a fair agreement without causing any harm. It’s a method of problem-solving that helps keep peace in a divorce. A collaborative divorce may result in you and your spouse being on the same page and be friendly to one another.

Although keeping your divorce out of the court system may seem good, it is possible to bring it to trial. If the spouse you are sharing with is person who is a bully or has a combative personality, things could become out of control, which is why the courts can keep them on the right track. 04of 26

Do you know my husband?

If the lawyer you hire is connected by your husband, this could pose a major issue, regardless of how you lawyer feels about his or her. Personal feelings or perceptions of someone else can get out from our capability to work with no bias, so do not hire someone with an ancestor with your spouse. 05of 26

Do you know the attorney of my spouse?

The fact that your lawyer is aware of the lawyer of your spouse may be important for you in a smaller way than whether the lawyer you hire knows you, however it’s something to consider. If they attended a course together in their first year at law school, you are at ease with your attorney, but If they were roommates at college, you may think about employing a different lawyer. 06of 26

Are you familiar with the local Family Court judges?

Prior to registering for an academic course at college You probably had a chat with other students about to tell you about the professor’s personality and how they grade and what their policy on tardiness, for instance. The same applies to hiring a lawyer since, prior to doing this, you must be sure that they know the local judge’s reputation and the manner that they typically decide. If the judge who is assigned to your case is inclined to be gentle with custodial rights when you’re seeking custody solely you’ll want your lawyer understand this so she can devise a solid strategy. 07of 26

Do you believe that it is more beneficial to negotiate and mediate instead of going to trial?

The most crucial thing to consider when hiring divorce lawyers is that you’re in agreement. If you’re seeking mediation and bargain however your lawyer is set in pursuing a trial this disagreement could affect the outcome of your case. 08of 26

Do you have any experience in of negotiating settlements or financial support?

For instance support for children or spouses and large financial settlements or even business valuations are certain to surface in divorce cases that involve either business or children, and so it is important to ensure that your lawyer is aware of the law and what they’re doing. 09of 26

Are you the attorney or will another from the firm handle my case?

You choose a particular attorney because you are comfortable with their method of working The final thing you’d want is that your case be assigned to different attorneys in the firm.

When you are hiring anyone, ensure that they’ll be with you from beginning to end. 10of 26

Are there any other people involved in managing my case?

When your situation is complex and requires attention over and handled by multiple individuals Make sure to know everyone that will be involved in the same way as you spoke with your main attorney. It is your future in the hands of them in a sense, so getting to know the people involved in your case is vitally important. 11of 26

Are you available by either email or telephone?

Divorces aren’t just a one-and done kind of thing So if an urgent issue occurs and you don’t think waiting until the next appointment to talk about it to your lawyer, you’ll wish to communicate with your attorney via telephone or via email. Another thing to inquire about is whether you’ll be charged for this interaction. 12of 26

Are you carrying a massive case load?

When your attorney is handling several cases, they might not have enough time to dedicate as much attention to your case as they could be. The divorce process is extremely significant, so ensure that your lawyer has time to pay it the attention that it deserves prior to signing any documents. 13of 26

Can I get copies of the documents I filed by the court?

We’ve all heard about the term “on the record,” which is crucial in legal dispute because you might have to reference documents or conversations for your case. If you believe it could be vital, ensure that all communications with your spouse’s lawyer and any other documents that pertain to your case will be in your possession in the event that you require. 14of 26

Will I be up-to-date on any developments concerning my case?

You choose how involved you would like to be with regard to divorce proceedings. Some individuals may want to be informed about every aspect of the process while others prefer being kept informed only of the most important things. If you’re in the latter group, make sure that your lawyer is open for you to exchange any information with you. 15of 26

Are you willing to ask me for my opinion prior to planning an approach?

As with being updated on any developments that may affect your particular case. Whether you’d like to be informed about the strategy of your attorney is entirely your decision. Make sure you and your lawyer agree on the details prior to you sign the retainer. 16of 26

Do you have any personal views on joint or sole custody?

There are some who aren’t sure what they think about major life-changing decisions like sole or joint parental custody for their kids. Therefore, having an expert weigh-in could aid them in making a decision. In the end, lawyers have been through this much more than you and can provide some valuable information about the elements of custody agreements and what kind arrangement will work the best for you and your kids. 17of 26

What is your retainer amount?

Your lawyer may be able to provide this information , without needing to ask , as they want to ensure that you are able to pay for their services prior to putting the effort in your matter. But, in the event of a need you need to know, make sure this is out of the way as soon as possible. 18of 26

What is your hourly rate of billing?

As with therapists and tutors lawyers are typically charged by the hour, so be sure that you understand the terms of your contract prior to signing any contract. You might be able to afford fees for retainers, however not for the hourly rate, so be sure you request an all-inclusive breakdown of costs. 19of 26

What fees do I have to pay cover the services of other affiliates?

If the primary lawyer you choose isn’t the sole attorney working on your case you may be paying for associates their time. Although this is not uncommon understanding what you’re paying for can make your head feel a little more relaxed. 20of 26

If my case is referred to the divorce court is there an additional costs?

Every company has their own rules in relation to taking cases to the court. It’s not uncommon for additional charges to be added in the event that your case is taken to the court. 21of 26

Do I need to sign a document that outlines fees?

Everyone has their own opinion regarding signing a fee arrangement agreement however, we generally believe that it’s good to sign one. If you’ve hired a reliable lawyer, they probably won’t try to get every penny However, in the event of you do, making sure that every penny that you spend is counted is always a good idea. A fee arrangement basically means that your lawyer will not begin charging you for extra services after you have paid an initial retainer and agree to an agreement with them. 22of 26

Can I receive bill items?

Similar to the checks you pay at a restaurant. Itemized bills detail exactly what is being paid for. The choice of whether or not you’d like one or the other is entirely your choice. 23of 26

Will I receive updates about how the retainer fee is utilized and when it’s being consumed?

It’s something you need to talk to your lawyer about prior to making a decision to hire them. Because while some lawyers see retainers as deposits and others might add another retainer in the event that you don’t use your original one prior to the case has been closed. This isn’t a problem for certain people however, if it is important for you, you should be sure to discuss it in the early stages. 24of 26

Are you going to ask the court to have my spouse to pay for my attorney’s expenses?

If you’re economically dependent on the soon to be ex You may want to think about hiring an attorney who will ask the court to require your spouse to reimburse them for their services. This basically means that you will get an equal hearing or collaborative divorce. 25of 26

What is the cost for phone calls and letters to the attorney of my spouse or me?

The hourly fee is normal among lawyers as the cost is for their services and certain days could be more busy than other days. It’s important to know whether you’ll be charged for every single thing in which your lawyer will be taking time. 26of 26

Are there any other charges?

Hidden costs are the worst. So be sure to inquire with your lawyer about any cost you might be charged, such as court filing fees as well as process server charges. While some lawyers include these fees in their fees overall Others ask for them to be paid separately.

1.) What number of divorces have you dealt with?

Divorce is stressful. One of the most important ways to maintain your mental stability is to pick an attorney in divorce who will guide and advise you in confidence, while taking into consideration the consequences of a long-term financial and legal process that you face on behalf of yourself.

2.) What is the most frequent time you make an agreement to settle divorce outside of court?

Sometimes, it is impossible to stay away from having your divorce proceedings go to the court. If this happens this usually means that your divorce proceedings are likely be longer-lasting and could cost more.

A divorce settlement agreement outside of court is preferred. This means you and your spouse are capable of negotiating an agreement without the need to go through the lengthy process of litigation.

If you locate a divorce attorney who has an excellent track record of making divorce settlement agreements outside of court, that’s usually a good indication.

3.) What’s your opinion on divorce that is collaborative?

In a collaborative divorce the divorced couple collaborate as a team rather than as adversaries, looking for the most effective solution to their challenges while maintaining friendly relations with one another.

The collaborative approach might not be the best option for every situation however, if you wish to remain on good terms with your ex-partner it’s worth discussing the issue with your divorce attorney.

4.) Are you acquainted with my partner? my attorney?

In general generally speaking, you want your divorce lawyer who can serve your best interests and without any biases towards your ex.

You should ensure that the attorney you select has no significant connections with any of the other parties in the case.

5) How are you familiar with the judges of your local family court?

Find a divorce lawyer with extensive experience in the local family court. And particularly a divorce lawyer that knows how judges in the local court tend to make decisions. This could be extremely beneficial to your case. For instance, if your lawyer has learned from previous experience that the judge you choose is more stringent in custody decisions, this could influence the way the case is handled.

6.) What’s your experience in LGBTQ divorce proceedings?

It may not be pertinent to all people, but if you are not married to straight or straight-passing relationships then you’ll probably need to locate an attorney with experience with divorces of same-sex. For the sake of your own mental strength it is best to seek out an attorney known as an LGBTQ partner. The lawyers of Clagett & Barnett are both happy to help LGBTQ people however they may, either that’s through protecting their marriage rights or helping them navigate divorce cases.

7.) Do you prefer to negotiate and mediate or even go to trial?

As we mentioned above that going to trial typically going to be a lengthy procedures. The most important thing to ensure to be sure that both you and the divorce lawyer agree on the level. If you’re really keen to explore mediation and negotiation however your divorce attorney is determined to go to trial, you are likely to get into a conflict and come to a crossroads. It might be better to locate an attorney who’s approach is in line with your preferences.

8.) What sort of expertise do you have in handling settlements in the financial sector?

The issue of money is likely to pop into any divorce, no matter if it’s in the form of valuation of the business as well as child care payments. To ensure that you receive the best result, you’ll want to ensure that your divorce lawyer has plenty of expertise in handling these issues.

9) Are you going to take care of my case in-person or handing it to someone else in your company?

You might encounter a divorce attorney with a personal style and personality you enjoy. You might “click” with this person and anticipate working with them throughout the divorce process.

What happens if you realize that you’re not really working directly with the attorney instead, but with a junior partner of the firm? This is likely to be quite difficult. In order to avoid that, we suggest just confirming that the lawyer you talk to is the one performing the majority of the work for your case and that they’re the one with whom you’ll be in direct contact throughout the course of the case.

10) How do I reach you?

In the course of your divorce it is normal to be faced with questions or concerns that come up. You might even experience moments when your emotions are heightened and you need someone to talk with.

Therefore, it’s just normal to ask what ways your lawyer can be contactable. Will they be available when you contact them? Are they able to respond to texts? What time will it take for them to respond to your messages?

Before you hire a divorce lawyer make sure you have a set of basic expectations for communicating.

11) What do you think of your caseload?

This is a tricky issue. On one hand the divorce lawyer you choose to work with is currently dealing with 30 separate cases, they might not be capable of giving you the individual attention you’d want.

However in the event that your attorney doesn’t have any other clients, it could be a an indication of.

Choose an attorney for divorce who is honest about their current workload and will make reasonable promises to be available to you, even as they are balancing their other clients’ demands.

12) What will you do to keep me up-to-date?

Certain clients want to be informed regarding every aspect regarding their particular case. Others simply would like to be up to date on most important changes. Consult with your divorce attorney about when and how often they’ll provide updates. Remember, the most important thing is to establish clear expectations in advance.

13.) How do you feel about sole custody? thoughts about joint versus sole custody?

The choice to pursue the sole or joint custody option will not just be a major impact on your situation, but it will also impact the rest of the life of your kid.

It isn’t easy to decide which route you want to take. It is possible to inquire about the feelings that your attorney has. Find out what their position is on the subject, both as a lawyer, but also as a parent.

14) What will I be charged?

It is essential to discuss financial issues before signing on the paper. Particularly, inquire with your divorce attorney about how the cost will be for their retainer fees and hourly billing rates. Also, ask if you’ll be charged for any associates your lawyer enlists to assist you with your case.

(Note Note: Many lawyers will share this informationto make sure you’ll be able to pay for them before they take too long consulting you, but in the event that they don’t mention it, be ready to raise it yourself.)

15) What happens to additional charges?

When you’re discussing finances discuss with your attorney, inquire if there will be any additional fees in the event that your case ends into the courtroom. It is commonplace that lawyers charge additional costs before they’re willing to present on your behalf in court. (Note it is a further reason you might want to locate an attorney who can help in negotiating an out-of-court divorce settlement.)

16) Do you intend to petition the court to have my spouse to cover my attorney’s expenses?

Do you rely on the financial support of you (soon-to-be-ex) husband or wife? If yes, then you might want to locate an attorney willing to request the court to make your spouse pay for all costs for legal representation.

Additionally, you should discuss with your divorce lawyer the impact of this on the overall case. For example, if your spouse pays all attorney’s costs this could make it possible that your divorce attorney may recommend an agreement to divorce.

17) What have you learned in divorces with high conflict?

This may not be the case for all people, but in certain situations, you may be able to think that your divorce is going to be a particularly contentious one.

This type of case requires a specialist set of skills, so be sure you hire a divorce attorney with the right amount of experience.

18) What’s your strategy to deal with my situation?

Naturally, in an initial meeting the divorce attorney may not have a complete strategy. However, they could offer you some fundamental insights basing their advice on the basic information about your case. It might be beneficial to listen to your divorce lawyer speak about strategies even if it’s simply generally.

Also, inquire if you will have the chance to comment on the strategy , or accept your consent before the strategy is implemented.

19) What is the time frame it will take to decide my case?

Many attorneys are willing to give an estimated date , which can help you set the right expectations and understand what happens during divorce. Most importantly the question will aid you in assessing the lawyer’s ability to communicate honestly with you, rather than making excuses.

20) What’s your life beyond your law practice?

If you select an attorney for divorce you’re ultimately selecting the person with whom you’re likely to have a close connection over many months. It’s natural to be partnered with someone who will allow you to communicate freely and who you feel comfortable.

Many clients are more at ease working with Cassie & Margo because they realize that our attorneys are wives and mothers who are dedicated to their families and live full and balanced lives, even outside of their legal profession.