Choosing an attorney to represent you in your
family law matter may be one of the most important decisions you’ll ever make. It
is important to be selective when you are choosing a divorce attorney.
By doing so you will be more confident the representation and in the legal
proceedings. By choosing the right
Texas divorce lawyer for your case you will increase your chances at obtaining favorable results
for yourself and your children.
It important for you to understand how you will be charged. However, you
should not base your hiring decision on cost alone. Some questions we
encourage you ask when hiring an attorney include:
Does the Attorney Offer a Free Consultation?
I have placed this one towards the top of the list not because it is the
most important thing when it comes to hiring a divorce lawyer but because
I think it is an important tool for helping you to find the right attorney for your
One of the best ways to find a divorce lawyer is to interview attorneys.
However, this can be a costly thing if the attorney charges a consultation
fee. Attorney consultation fees can be range from $150-$500. This means
if you interview 3 attorneys you may have spent $450-$1,500 just interviewing
divorce lawyers and the has not even started yet.
I and several other divorce lawyers I know offer free consultations. I
do this as a chance to get to know prospective clients and for them to
get to know me. This allows us both to find out if we want to work together.
A question to ask yourself when you are interviewing divorce lawyers is
do they provide you with information to help you make your decisions or
do they hold back? When you come, and meet with the lawyer at the Law
Office of Bryan Fagan we will take time and answer as many of your questions
as we can.
At the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, we believe it is important for clients
to have as much information as we can give them to help them make educated
and informed decisions with attorney guidance.
Once the client makes the decision, it is the attorney’s job to advocate
for that decision. Some attorneys believe that they should make the decisions.
It’s your case and your life – you should make the decisions.
Do you feel Comfortable with the Lawyer?
I believe one of the most important requirements for choosing a divorce
lawyer is that you need to feel comfortable with that lawyer. Some people
have it in their heads that they need a “bulldog,” or an attorney
with 50-years of experience.
I believe it is more important to have an attorney that is compatible with
you who will listen to you, someone you feel comfortable with, someone
who has a practice with a focus on
family law, and most importantly, someone you can trust.
You need to believe in them and and believe in their advice. If it takes
several consultations to find that comfort level, then so be it. It is
better to spend time up front finding a lawyer with whom you click than
getting into court and not feeling like the person sitting next to you
cares about you or your children.
What are Your Credentials and is Your Law Practice Focused on Divorce and
The most important thing to look for in selecting a divorce or
family lawyer in Texas is that they are licensed to practice in the State where the case is ongoing.
I sometimes get clients who have a case in a state other than Texas. Unfortunately
depending on the circumstances, I am unable to help them and need to refer
them to an attorney licensed to practice in that State. Other times I
can help them because the facts of their case are such that we can open
a case in Texas and move forward.
The next important thing to look for is an attorney whose practiced is
Family Law. I sometimes run into attorneys who try and do all areas of the law. I
believe this is a disservice to their clients.
The one constant in the law is change. Texas courts continue to interpret
laws differently, and our Texas legislatures continue to pass new laws
and change existing ones. The Texas Rules of civil procedure, evidence,
and local court rules vary from one judge to the next.
All lawyers in the state of Texas are legally able to do divorce work,
but you should look for someone who does only family law or for whom family
law makes up most of their practice.
It is important to look for a lawyer who has handled many divorce cases,
has worked with complex asset divisions, has handled contested custody
matters, and has been successful. That attorney will guide you through
your divorce fluidly, efficiently, and competently.
At the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, we focus exclusively on family law practice,
including divorce, child custody, parenting establishment and paternity.
99% of our practice is devoted to
family law. We have earned respect within the legal community for our trial skills,
our knowledge of complex asset and property divisions, and our handling
of child custody matters. We have been at this for many years, and we
never lose sight of our clients’ goals and needs.
How Much Will the Legal Representation Cost?
Ask how much you will be charged for legal services and how much of an
up-front fee is required. Find out what the attorney’s billing practices
are, because you need to know how and when you will be billed.
In family law, most attorneys charge an hourly rate. In the Houston, Texas
area, this usually runs from $150 per hour to $500 per hour or more. At
our office, we have several lawyers that we bill out at different rates.
We can match one of our attorneys to help accommodate your budget.
At the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, we charge by the quarter an hour or in
15-minute increments. So, if you call on the phone and have a five-minute
phone call, we could charge for a 15-minute phone call.
Most the time for our clients we like to facilitate communications so if
the client has a quick 5-minute question we will take and document the
phone call on their invoice but not charge them. However, if this client
calls us 3 or 5 times a day then those calls will be lumped together and billed.
A normal case may have expenses and fees, such as filing fees service fees,
expert fees, or even document copying charges when documents are sent
to a copier service. It is important to look at the fee agreement and
see how you will be charged.
Some attorneys do not send out invoices to their clients for months at
a time. Ask the attorney how they will bill their time on your case. Other
law firms charge a minimum of 12 minutes for any task, regardless of whether
the work required 3 minutes. Furthermore, some firms charge a higher rate
for appearing in court than the rate for other tasks.
When you arrive to meet with us at the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, we will
discuss the cost of legal representation before any representation agreement
is signed. We will explain our billing system and when payments are due
– there will be no hidden expenses and no surprise legal fees.
We want you to make an informed decision and be completely comfortable
with our fee structure. Each month when you receive a billing update from
our firm we encourage you to review it and if you have any questions regarding
any charge we encourage you to call us and ask. We never charge you to
discuss your invoice.
Have You Ever Been Sanctioned for an Attorney Ethics Violation?
Attorneys are held to high ethical standards regarding how they practice
law and the customer service they provide to clients. The State Bar of
Texas regulates its members and, when necessary, disciplines attorneys
with sanctions to punish for acts of professional misconduct.
A grievance filed against an attorney can lead to reprimand, probation,
suspension, restitution, and revocation of the attorney’s license
to practice law within Texas. You need assurance that the character and
competency of your attorney justifies your decision to hire. If you have
concerns about an attorney, you can look them up on the Texas Bar Website.
At the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, practicing law with the highest degree
of ethics is at our firm’s core. Not one of our attorneys has ever
been found in violation of an attorney ethics rule. We take great pride
in our reputation for high professional standards, and successful, experienced
family law representation for our clients.
What Kind of Online Reviews Do They Have?
I am sometimes surprised when certain lawyers get hired. This is because
a simple search online of the attorney’s or firm’s name would
reveal either an ethics violation or that previous clients have had a
bad experience with that attorney. Some places to check out a lawyer’s
reputation with clients includes Google, Yelp, or Avvo.
Will I Receive Copies of All Documents in My Case?
Ask how the attorney will assure that you will have access to your documents
whenever you need them. There can be nothing more worrisome than not knowing
what has transpired in your case, or being asked to respond to a document
in the case that you have never seen and know nothing about.
Unfortunately, some attorneys fail to provide their clients with copies
of the documents filed with the court, orders issued by the court, or
correspondences between the attorneys.
It is the policy of the Law Office of Bryan Fagan to copy clients on all
communications with opposing parties and opposing counsel. This means
if an email is sent to other side our attorney’s and paralegals
will copy you on those communications so you know what is being discussed.
If a document is filed with the court by our firm, we will send you a copy
of that document. If we receive a document from an opposing counsel, we
will forward you that document so you will have a chance to review it.
This is your case and you are entitled to know what is going on in your
case. It is our policy that you are always entitled to a copy of your
file or anything in your file upon request.
How Responsive are You to Answering Emails and Returning Phone Calls?
When you are looking for a divorce lawyer one of the things you should
consider is do you feel like the lawyer will be responsive to your needs
and able to respond to your questions in a timely manner?
Some attorneys will not return your telephone calls within a reasonable
time. This is something that many attorney’s struggle with is communicating
in a prompt manner with clients.
Part of the problem for family law and divorce lawyers is due to the nature
of their practice they are out of the office more than many other types
Divorce and Family Law Lawyers are often in Court or in
Mediation which means they are not in the office to answer calls and it can be difficult
to respond to emails as well.
This can be especially difficult for attorneys who do not have a support
staff to help them. The reality is that your attorney may not always be
available. He or she may be in court on another person’s case and
focused on that case. That is fine, because when it is your turn in court
or mediation or some other time you will want the attorney devoted to
At the Law Office of Bryan Fagan we strive to return client’s phone
calls promptly. We are constantly seeking ways to improve our clients
experience and make it easier for clients to communicate with us.
At the Law Office of Bryan Fagan one way we have sought to deal with this
problem is our attorneys work in teams. Most or our cases have a Senior
Attorney and a Junior Attorney assigned to them. This gives clients access
to two attorneys who they can communicate with regarding their case.
An example of how this can be beneficial is if one of the attorneys assigned
to their case is in court, mediation, or on the phone. Then the other
attorney should be available to answer questions. We are constantly striving
to give our clients outstanding customer service.
A good question to ask prospective divorce and family law lawyers is how
you will be able to contact them and how long it will take them to return
How Much Experience Do You Have with Complex High Asset Property Divisions,
and With Finding Hidden Assets?
With some divorces, the property division may be complex and contentious.
Adding to the tension is the reality that some spouse will attempt to
conceal assets. Before deciding to hire a lawyer, you need to know whether the attorney
is experienced in dealing these matters.
When one party deliberately conceals assets, direct and swift action must
be taken to bring those assets before the court for division. It is important
to have a lawyer who has experience with high asset divorce cases and
knows how to search out clues to hidden assets. Not all
divorce attorneys have experience with business valuations, stock portfolios, finance matters,
tax and debt issues, or how to uncover hidden assets.
If you want to know more about what you can do,
CLICK the button below to get your
“16 Steps to Help You Plan & Prepare for Your Texas Divorce”
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- Can I sue my spouse's mistress in Texas?
- 6 Tips - On How to prepare for a Texas Divorce
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- Child Custody Basics in Texas
- 6 Mistakes that can Destroy Your Texas Divorce Case
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- Does it Matter who Files First in a Texas Divorce?
Law Office of Bryan Fagan | Spring Divorce Lawyers
The Law Office of Bryan Fagan routinely handles matters that affect children
and families. If you have questions regarding
divorce, it's important to speak with one of our
Spring, TX Divorce Lawyers right away to protect your rights.
divorce lawyers in Spring TX are skilled at listening to your goals during this trying process and
developing a strategy to meet those goals.
Contact Law Office of Bryan Fagan by calling (281) 810-9760 or submit your contact information in our online
form. The Law Office of Bryan Fagan handles
Divorce cases in Spring, Texas,
The Woodlands, the FM 1960 area, or surrounding areas, including
Fort Bend County and