No matter how well you cope with stress, dealing with your divorce won’t be easy. Divorces often change family dynamics and impact people emotionally and financially, and it is indispensable to handle the situation with care. Also, the entire legal process in Alabama is complex and can take time. Even if you and your spouse seem to agree on important things, you should get legal advice from an experienced divorce attorney. If you are hiring a family lawyer for the first time, here are some aspects to consider.
Start with the basic questions
Not all law firms and divorce lawyers are the same. As a client, you have the right to compare your options and evaluate the work profile of shortlisted attorneys before making a choice. The first meeting with a divorce lawyer doesn’t have to be expensive and gives you the window to discuss your case and know the attorney better. Ask some of these critical questions listed below –
- How long have you been practicing family law?
- Do you take up matters concerning contested divorces?
- Are you familiar with the county courts where the divorce will be filed?
- What are some of your landmark divorce cases?
- How often do you go to trial? What is the average settlement?
- Would you be working on my divorce case personally?
- How would I communicate with you?
- Do you have experience with divorce mediation?
- How many divorce cases are you handling right now? Do you have the bandwidth for me?
Discuss the fee
Once you are convinced that an attorney is a right fit for your divorce, you need to discuss their fee. If yours is an uncontested divorce, you can expect many law firms to charge a flat fee, and this fee could be a tad higher if the divorce involves minor children. If yours is a contested divorce, you will have to hire the lawyer on a retainer basis, which will require an upfront fee with an hourly rate. It is essential to confirm that you can afford the lawyer in the first place.
Getting divorced is stressful enough, and you wouldn’t want to add more hassles to your life by trying to deal with everything alone. Hire an attorney before you make any move and ask them if they can help negotiate things with your spouse’s attorney. A good divorce lawyer will always try to avoid the court trial, which is expensive and extremely complicated.