Are you in the process of figuring out whether a divorce is the next, best step for you? If so, then you know that this is a difficult position to be in. Deciding about the future of your marriage carries with it so many consequences that you aren’t even able to see at this moment. Deciding to get a divorce from your spouse can set into motion several different events that otherwise may impact your life more than the divorce itself. Remember- property and children’s issues are both relevant to a divorce.
On the other hand, not moving forward with a necessary divorce in the best interests of you and your family could also prove to be a major mistake with consequences of its own. Many people choose to stay in a marriage that is failing for a variety of reasons. You may rely on your spouse for income since you have not worked in many years. For that reason, you have less confidence that a divorce is something that you manage to afford. After all, aren't divorces expensive? Due to money concerns, you are choosing to remain in a marriage that is not good for you or your children.
Facing several questions about divorce is a normal experience at this stage of your thought process. Going through something like a divorce for the first time is intimidating. You know that there are many facets to a divorce, but you don't know what those steps exactly are. At least you know what you don't know- which is a lot! Working as a teacher, salesperson, grocery store cashier or truck driver doesn't exactly provide you with a great deal of time to learn about Texas family law, does it? This is where you have the decision to make- try to go about obtaining a divorce on your own or seeking the counsel of an experienced family law attorney.
Deciding whether to hire a lawyer for your divorce case
Ultimately, the decision of whether to hire an attorney for your divorce will be up to you. Let's start here: there is no requirement or law in Texas that you need to hire a lawyer to represent you in a divorce. People get divorced every day in our State without the assistance, perspective, or expertise of a lawyer. It is not impossible, and you may be capable of doing it yourself. I have known people who look at the opportunity to represent themselves in a divorce as the challenge of a lifetime. These folks are motivated by the divorce and put in the time and effort to learn about divorce law and then put that knowledge into practice. This is almost like a storyline that you would hear about in a movie or television show: Regular Joe or Jolene learns the law and wins the divorce case without a lawyer.
While that sounds fun and inspiring, there are no guarantees in a divorce. What sounds like a great adventure and an opportunity to test your intelligence and mettle against that of your spouse (and possibly their attorney) may turn out to be a huge mistake for you and your children. It’s very possible to get in over your head in a divorce and find yourself in a position where you are making mistake after mistake. The Law Office of Bryan Fagan has clients who have tried to get divorced on their own, only to find out that the process may be more complicated than they were led to believe.
The experience of these folks should give you the reason for pause when it comes to trying to get divorced without the assistance of an attorney. Making mistakes in a divorce can mean that you lose time and money. The more important of those two things, believe it or not, is time. You can always save money or find ways to make more money to make up for money lost in a divorce. However, there is no way to make up for lost time. The lost time in a divorce or even the lost time in remaining married to a person. Or the time lost in not being able to move on with your life to be able to live the rest of your life as a single adult.
The point we need to address in today's blog post from the Law Office of Bryan Fagan is how you can set about hiring an expert divorce lawyer for your case. You will certainly not suffer from a lack of options when it comes to divorce lawyers in southeast Texas. You can drive down the street and come upon the signs and advertisements of many, many family law attorneys that would be more than happy for you to hire them to represent you in the case. Are those attorneys the right ones for you? How do you even decide what attorney is right for you?
That is what we are going to be talking about in this blog post. Why an attorney is important to your case is what we have been discussing so far in today's blog post. Next, we can talk about what kind of attorney you need, and where to find them, and then close out our discussion by going through some details of retaining an attorney and how to take as much advantage of the relationship as possible. This is something that many people overlook in the context of a divorce but can have a tremendous negative impact.
Any questions that you may have about the world of Texas family law can be addressed to the attorneys with the Law Office of Bryan Fagan. Our licensed family law attorneys offer free-of-charge consultations six days a week in person, over the phone, and via video. These consultations can be a first step towards you learning about the law and how the circumstances of your case will interact with and be impacted by Texas divorce law. You can ask questions of our lawyers and find out why so many neighbors and members of this community are both satisfied clients and former clients of our office.
Where do you find a lawyer?
It used to be that when you needed to find anything, legal services included, you would pull open the phone book and search with forefinger to paper until you found what you were looking for. On the one hand, this was great because you knew exactly where to look. There weren't a ton of options available to you, so it wasn't like you had to waste a great deal of time looking for a source in the first place. On the downside, you were limited in the amount of information that you could access in a pre-printed book that contained companies and people that may no longer have offered the service that you were looking for. Additionally, you may also have missed out on newly opened businesses that could perform the service you desired.
Another option that you could have taken advantage of was to drive down the street in your area and look for signs that advertised for attorneys, for example. There may have been buildings or groups of offices where you knew that there would be lawyers who could be found. In that situation, I suppose that you could walk into the building and look around for a lawyer who practiced family law or just a general practice attorney who could do the job for you. There wasn't an internet to see reviews of the lawyer or to even see where he or she went to law school or anything like that. Simpler times.
The final option is one that still exists today. You could ask a friend or family member who has been through a divorce if he or she has a recommendation. Word of mouth is a major way how businesses to attract customers. If you needed a good restaurant at which to eat or the best mechanic to service German automobiles, then you may ask a friend for their recommendation. What another person has gone through with divorce may lead you to become more confident in your choice of an attorney. If he or she has shown to be loyal, trustworthy, and professional then these are the sort of characteristics that you are probably looking for in a lawyer. The beauty of relying upon the recommendation of a friend is that you trust this person. As a result, you will feel better about relying upon this person’s opinion rather than asking a stranger on the street about what he or she thinks.
Nowadays you can still do each of these things to find a good lawyer. However, there are more options available to you such as using the internet to find a lawyer. For most people who are looking to hire a lawyer, this is the method that they will use. After all, you're here reading this blog post right now. You can look for a lawyer from the comfort of your home without having to ever get dressed. On top of that, you have attorneys like those with the Law Office of Bryan Fagan who offer free-of-charge consultations six days a week where you can set the meeting for you and the attorney. Everything is at your fingertips and on your schedule. This is on top of being able to perform a background check on the person to determine if the attorney is one that you would like to hire in the first place.
As far as whether you want to hire an attorney or not that is completely up to you. A good rule of thumb is that you could choose to utilize the services of an attorney, especially in those cases where children are involved and/or a significant amount of property. Significant is a term that won't mean the same thing in this context to all people. What I consider to be a significant amount of property may not be that significant in your opinion. However, you can make that choice in your life and your case as to whether the property that you own is enough to cause you to want to hire a lawyer.
What to do when you find a lawyer you are interested in hiring?
Once you have found a lawyer that you want to hire it would be ideal to find at least one more. When you get into a position that you have never been through before it is generally a good idea for you to look around for as many options as you can find when it comes to making a hire like this. The second opinions are good. Options are good. You can make better decisions when you have options in front of you rather than being forced to make a hire one way or another. Options allow you to think more clearly about whatever situation you are involved in so that you can come out to the other side with a better perspective than you had before. This is no different than what you can go through when you are hiring an attorney. It can feel like no options in front of you when the divorce is starting other than to hire an attorney as quickly as possible. However, you can and should take the time to hire the right lawyer for your and your family's divorce case. Failing to seek out any opportunities to meet with an attorney simply because you believe that time is not on your side would be a mistake. You can reach out to the Law Office of Bryan Fagan to initiate a phone call, video chat, or in-person meeting to determine if our office is a good fit for you and your divorce.
When you contact the attorney’s office you should ask about consultations and any availability in the upcoming few days. While you do not need to act as if time is complete of the essence, it is also true that you do need to act with some decisiveness in that situation. You do not want to put yourself in a situation where you miss a deadline or suffer some other setback in your case because you picked the "wrong" attorney to represent you. In this way, you need to have a single-minded focus on the case to the extent that your search for an attorney should be prioritized.
Being intentional throughout the divorce is a good plan and a step that you need to take to present your case as best as possible. You can wander into a divorce, but you cannot wander out of a divorce and expect to accomplish many of the goals that you may have thought up. Even goal setting itself may prove to be very challenging for you. To that end, having an experienced family law attorney can help you by performing well in the courtroom and also by helping you come up with ideas on how to brainstorm good ideas and goals for your case.
Once you have found at least one attorney that you would like to meet with it would be a good idea for you to reach out to him or her to see what kind of availability exists for a consultation with them. Currently, you can oftentimes find an attorney who is willing to meet with you on relatively short notice. That is the benefit of having different ways to meet with a potential client available to you. For example, the Law Office of Bryan Fagan will offer you an online meeting, a phone meeting, and an in-person meeting to discuss with you what it means to be a client of the Law Office of Bryan Fagan. In these consultations, you can ask questions and listen to the response from an attorney about your case and the law.
When you meet with that attorney you should ask questions about pricing and attorney's fees. While every family law attorney bills differently the general framework for hiring a lawyer in a divorce case is to pay him or her a retainer at the beginning of your relationship and then a monthly payment amount thereafter. There may be slight variations on this depending on the attorney but attorneys bill by the hour and you can expect that the more work which must be performed in your case means that more money will have to be spent on the lawyer. However, much work you can do on your own in the case would be beneficial at least from the perspective of paying less attorney's fees. To learn more about our law practice and our expertise in the world of Texas family law they had to ask questions of our attorneys please reach out to us today.
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