When you are preparing for a divorce, parental responsibilities proceeding, or any other matter of family law, the attorney you choose can absolutely affect the outcome of your case. You need a lawyer who is not only knowledgeable and well-versed in the law, but also shares your values and who can incorporate them in advocating on your behalf. To find the right attorney, you will need to consider a number of factors. Before making a final decision, interview several potential candidates and do not be afraid to ask lots of questions such as:
What is your experience?
Does the attorney practice primarily family law or is he or she a personal injury lawyer that sometimes handles divorce cases? The level of commitment you can expect is often evident in the answer to this question.
How many cases do you handle and how many go to trial?
Some attorneys thrive on litigation, while others see the courtroom as a battlefield of last resort. A high rate of litigated cases can mean one of two things: the attorney accepts a large number of clients who stubbornly refuse to negotiate; or the lawyer may struggle with finding mutually acceptable solutions.
What would your approach to my case be?
You probably have a concept of what your ideal outcome would be, and possibly even how to get there. Present your case to the attorney as objectively as possible to find out his or her perspective. Does he or she prefer or recommend mediation or collaborative law? If the attorney’s intended approach is vastly different from yours, you may need to consider an alternative.
Who will be handling my case?
Will there be one attorney with several paralegals? With the attorney who met with you be in charge or will your case be relegated to an associate? Will you be able to talk to the same person throughout your case? There are no right or wrong responses to these questions, but be sure you are comfortable with the answers.
How will you keep me updated?
Chances are, your case will take some weeks or months to fully resolve. Will your attorney let you know by phone, email, or traditional mail every time a new step is taken or will you get a summary every so often? Likewise, will you be able to contact the lawyer if and when developments arise on your end?
What will I be charged?
Does the firm bill by the hour? Is each phone call or email automatically a quarter-hour charge? Your attorney should also be able to give you a reasonable estimate of what he or she believes your case will probably cost. Obviously, much will depend upon the resistance and objections of the other parties, but you should be able to get at least some idea.
In choosing the right family law attorney, you have nearly limitless options. It is important to select the one with whom you believe you can work best. At Andrew Cores Family Law Group, we welcome your questions and encourage you learn more about our firm. Contact an experienced DuPage County family law attorney for a free initial consultation today.