When you are going through a relationship breakdown you may wonder just how to choose your divorce lawyer to represent you in the best way possible. Here are our top tips to ensure you find a great lawyer, especially if you have never had to look before.
Ask your friends and family for their recommendations, especially if they have had to go through a divorce themselves. Word of mouth really is a great way to judge the reputation of a family law firm.
Choose a specialist solicitor who deals with family law. If you instruct a solicitor who deals with many aspects of life that require a solicitor they may not have the same level of expertise.
Is your prospective divorce lawyer deemed competent by displaying the ‘Law Society – Family Law’ or ‘Law Society – Advanced’ Logo on their website, stationery or in their offices? The green and black logos show that they are licenced by the Law Society’s Family Law Panel and shows that the solicitors have passed a rigorous test of professional ability and work to incredibly high standards.
Are you able to have an initial consultation with your prospective solicitor? This quick chat usually lasts about 30 minutes and allows you to outline your situation with your family law solicitor and they can find out from you the relevant information that the court would be interested in, briefly.
They can then give you an overview of what your case may involve, what would be your best course of action, possible outcomes and possible range of costs. You can talk to a few different solicitors to find which will suit your needs best. Experienced family law solicitors will have a very good idea from this chat what will happen during your divorce, no matter how individual you are. This does not mean that your case is not taken as an individual case, but they will know what is likely to happen.
How do you feel when you are in contact with your divorce lawyer at this meeting or when contacting them? They should be caring and compassionate towards you, but you also need to know the hard facts and feel that they are telling you what will happen from the point of view of the court who will eventually make the decision about your divorce.
Although sometimes difficult to hear, you want your solicitor to honestly and directly tell you if there are any matters that will hold you up, any obstacles, or if you are being unrealistic in what you are setting out to achieve in a settlement. This is the sign of a good divorce lawyer.
They are not there to be a friend, they are there to represent you and get you the most appropriate result. They will however, discuss many aspects of your relationship in the course of their dealing with you, as they want to ensure that you are proceeding in the correct manner and if there is any chance of you reconciling your relationship in the future.
When dealing with a solicitor you want to feel that they are completely in control of your information and situation at all times. They should make you feel confident that they have not got your expectations up and clearly discuss their costs with you so that you can make an informed decision as to whether they are the best choice for you and your situation.
Is your solicitor experienced? An experienced divorce solicitor will be able to provide you with invaluable advice and guidance on how your divorce should be handled. A good divorce solicitor will help you to come up with an intelligent and appropriate strategy.