I wanted to provide some tips on how you can choose between all of the Detroit divorce attorneys in the area to hopefully help you get through divorces.
I’ve learned that the attorney you hire is one of the most important decisions you can make in-regards to how your divorce turns out.
So here are some tips to helping you find the right Detroit divorce attorney for you.
Note: While you want to search around and interview attorneys until you find one that fits you, be aware that not all attorneys offer free consultation time. The consultation time is where you’d ask the important questions to see if they’re a good fit for you or not.
But many offer discounted consultations, though. Keep in mind that paying a little money on the front end to find the right attorney for you could very well be worth it in the long run.
Hire Someone Experienced in Family Law
You might even want to make sure they’re board-certified in family law.
The downside to hiring a board-certified attorney, is that they’re going to probably charge you more.
But the good thing, is that they usually have a lot of experience.
On top of that, to stay certified, they have to take some fairly challenging tests (from what I hear), so a board-certified attorney is probably going to be extremely knowledgeable, as well, which is definitely in your favor.
Bottom line, there are so many different types of law, that it’s in your best interest to hire an attorney that’s skilled specifically in family law.
Law is way too complicated to go hiring an attorney that specializes in another category, or doesn’t specialize in any specific area at all.
Are You Comfortable Around Them?
It’s important that you feel comfortable around the attorney you hire. Think about it; you’re going to be revealing some pretty sensitive information to your attorney…
…that is, if you want them to get all the information they need to help you through the divorce.
I’m sure you didn’t need any advice on this point, but I felt like I had to mention it anyways.
Be patient and shop-around.
There’s no reason why you shouldn’t be able to find someone that meets at least most of your criteria; especially in this huge Metropolitan Detroit area.
If They’re Cheap, They May Be Inexperienced
The divorce attorneys with the most experience tend to cost more.
But don’t fret, my friend. If you’re short on cash, and have to hire someone with less experience, it’s not necessarily a bad thing.
Think about it this way; if they’re young and inexperienced, they may be motivated to give you their all, so that they can establish a good reputation and track record.
I didn’t realize this myself before I did the research, but not all attorneys have
courtroom experience, believe it or not.
In hindsight, it makes sense, but I just never thought about it, to be honest.
If you have a feeling that your divorce might end up in court, you might want to make sure that the attorney you’re going to hire has experience in the courtroom.
You might even want to go a little deeper and find out about their history of “success” in the courtroom.
If you’re headed to court for something potentially life-changing like a divorce, do you really want someone with no experience in the courtroom representing you?
Familiarity With Family Law Judges
When you’re meeting with potential attorneys, ask them if they know the names and styles of the family law judges in your jurisdiction.
Not because you’re trying to get any preferential treatment (although I’m sure you’re not opposed to it, ha!) but because you want them to be familiar with the styles of the judges.
It’s to your benefit that they know how the judge that’s going to hear your case has ruled in cases like yours in the past.
The more familiar they are with the styles of the different judges, the better of a strategy they can put together for your case.
And of course, the better their strategy, the better of a chance you’ll have of having a desirable outcome.
High Price Doesn’t Necessarily Mean High Quality
We’re conditioned in our society to think that a high price attorney automatically means your chances of success are greater, but that isn’t always the case.
Think about what you’ve read in this article up to this point. Do you think every expensive attorney meets all of this criteria?
Of course not.
Therefore, it’s apparent that there’s a lot more to it than just getting the most expensive attorney you can afford.
A Nice Office Doesn’t Necessarily Mean High Quality
See the previous section; same thing applies here.
Compatibility with Your Philosophy
If you want to keep things civil, with little or no conflict between you and your soon-to-be-ex, you might not want an attorney that has the philosophy of “going for the jugular” of the other party.
And vice versa.
So make sure you and the attorney you’re hiring is on the same page regarding what your desired outcome is.
Keep in Mind that the Clock is Always Running
While you want to be comfortable enough with the attorney you pick to talk about personal things, don’t cross the line and start seeking them for spiritual and mental advice.
Number one, it’s not their job to provide those services.
Number two, every second of time you’re taking up of the attorney’s day, you’re probably going to be getting charged; regardless of whether or not the conversation is relevant or not.
So if you’re dealing with mental issues stemming from the divorce, seek out a therapist. Your wallet and mental well-being will thank you.
Note: When you’re interviewing prospective attorneys, keep in mind that they probably can’t give you a solid number regarding the total amount of money the divorce is going to cost you (as far as their fees), because there are so many variables involved.
It’s hard to predict exactly how much time they’re going to spend on your particular case, but they should be able to give you an estimate if they’re experienced.
Ask Friends for Referrals
Like they say, ‘birds of a feather flock together.”
If you have a friend who’s been through a divorce before, chances are that you guys share a lot of the same values (which is probably a major reason why you’re friends).
So sit down with them and ask them about their experiences with their divorce attorney.
They may help you identify some additional things to look for (or look “out” for, for that matter) when you’re shopping around for the right divorce attorney for you.
And if they had a good experience with their divorce attorney, you might even want to start out your search by interviewing their attorney first.
This could even help shorten the length of time you have to spend finding the right attorney.
Be careful, though. Don’t hire an attorney just because they worked with a friend in the past. You still want to make sure they meet the rest of your criteria.
Gotta run for now, but click the link below to check out part two.
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How to Pick a Divorce Lawyer (via bucks.blogs.nytimes.com)
Choosing a Divorce Attorney (via dummies.com)
How To Choose A Divorce Attorney (via wife.org)
A divorce attorney who’s a perfect fit (via divorcemag.com)
The “A” Team: Divorce Professionals (via divorcemag.com)