Selecting a Family Lawyer
When searching for a new family lawyer, a good place to begin is by asking family members, friends and acquaintances for recommendations. These individuals will be able to share any good (or unpleasant) experiences they have had with specific lawyers in the area. Also conduct independent research online. Popular search engines such as Google are a good place to research potential family lawyers. Clients can also check with the state’s Bar Association for a list of local lawyers, including their backgrounds.
Educational Background and Experience
Once a list of a few potential lawyers has been chosen, consider their background, knowledge and education. The best lawyer will have the right set of skills and experience to handle the family matter at hand. Only seek a qualified lawyer who possesses the knowledge and insight required to oversee delicate family dilemmas. The right lawyer will understand the complexities of various state and federal family laws and will be aware of any recent changes in the law. Keep in mind that there are different subsets of law practices, so choose a lawyer who works specifically in family law cases. Also consider any other special training, accolades or recognitions they have received. These additional credentials may separate a novice lawyer from a more experienced one.
Requesting a Free or Low Cost Consultation
Next, call these different lawyers directly for an initial consultation. Many of these consultations are free of charge, whereas others may have very nominal fees. This initial meeting will be an experience in what it will be like to work with the lawyer if they are chosen to represent the client. During this consultation, the lawyer will provide advice and guidance regarding the family’s situation. They will also provide advice on what the client’s rights are in the matter. Top family lawyers will exude professionalism, confidence and enthusiasm for the case. The ultimate goal of the meeting will be to determine whether or not the client and the lawyer are compatible in having an effective working relationship with one another. If after leaving the meeting, the client is left with a sense of comfort, then this lawyer may indeed be a good fit.
Other Qualities to Look for in a Family Lawyer
A good family lawyer should be able to engage the client, make them feel secure and educate them on the legal service’s process. The lawyer should be an open, frequent communicator who keeps the client informed and up-to-date on all aspects of the case. The lawyer should also exhibit ethical behavior. For example, during the consultation did the lawyer provide an upfront estimate of all costs associated with hiring them?
A final word of advice is this: always remember to use intuition when choosing a lawyer. It is much more difficult to change lawyers later on after they have begun working on the case than it is to simply choose the right lawyer from the very beginning. While these tips are not an exhaustive representation of all that is required for choosing a top family lawyer, they are an excellent starting point. Click here to see a list of the top family law lawyers in your area.