Probably the most common piece of advice I will give to a person when he or she is speaking to me about hiring a family law attorney is that a family law case is not like any other case, criminal or civil, that they will ever encounter again. A divorce is not a bankruptcy case.
A child custody modification is not a personal injury case. Attempting to reduce your child support is not the same as fighting over the breakup of your business. A family law case will delve into the most important issue and aspect of your life- your family- and the responsibility that your attorney takes on is significant.
This responsibility means that how you feel about your attorney is critical. Trusting that your attorney is going to treat your family like he or she would treat their own is something that is difficult to ascertain from a phone call so meeting an attorney face to face is important.
I’m not telling you that you will learn everything about the lawyer from one meeting- far from it- but you most likely have some sense of whom you can trust and whom you cannot. If you feel uncomfortable with the lawyer for any reason then you should probably listen to your gut and look elsewhere for a lawyer to represent you and your family.
The great thing about attorneys, especially those in southeast Texas, is that there are a lot of us and the lawyer that suits you and your case is out there. You just have to find him or her. The first three lawyers you meet with may be great for your three neighbors if they were in your position, but if the lawyer’s personality doesn’t jive with yours then you can move on to find someone who matches up better with you.
With that said, what are some other qualities that you should keep in mind when interviewing attorneys and how can you best determine which lawyer is right for you? Read on to find out more.
Put in some legwork to help you in your search for an attorney
I realize that you are reading an attorney’s website right now and you are more than welcome to surf our website and look at the positive things that we have to say about ourselves. I believe strongly in the ability of our office to potentially represent you and your family, but it is always best to verify the information or ideas that you have about a particular attorney.
Personal referrals from people in your life are important and a way that our office receives a lot of business, but looking at online reviews and information available to the public online and through sources like the Better Business Bureau can be extremely helpful as well. Doing research now to determine what attorney suits you best will help you from having to do this sort of search during the middle of your case, just prior to having to fire the lawyer you originally hired.
What do you want in a family law attorney?
I cannot speak for you specifically but I can let you know what I would be looking for in a family law attorney if I needed representation. Also, in terms of looking at my fellow attorneys, these are traits that I admire and will always attempt to emulate and embody in my own practice of the law.
Varied skill set
A varied skill set in my opinion means that your attorney should be able to succeed on your behalf both inside a courtroom and at the negotiating table. Knowledge of the law and strong advocacy skills are crucial in a trial, as well as the ability to formulate legal arguments and communicate them effectively to a judge.
On the other hand, an ability to understand the other side’s positions and make offers that will increase your bargaining position while simultaneously pushing towards a settlement are very important in a mediation setting.
Experience in the area of your specific case
Are you entering into a divorce with a lot of property at stake? Did your ex spouse take your child prior to a period of your possession and you have no idea where your child is? What if you need to have your son’s child support increased due to a new medical diagnosis that requires 24 hour care from a nurse or other medical professional?
These are the sort of specific questions you should ask the attorney you are interviewing during that initial consultation. If you have an extremely specific issue that will need to be litigated then you are best served by hiring an attorney who has successfully represented other people in your situation. If not, I would move on to another attorney.
Fair attorney’s fees based on the services provided
You and I can debate all day and all night what the word “fair” means in the context of attorney’s fees. Typically an attorney will charge an upfront or “retainer” fee that allows you to retain the lawyer and his services for the duration of your case. Subsequent to that, an attorney will charge you on an hourly basis for work done on your case.
This includes taking phone calls from you, opposing counsel, preparing for hearings, conducting research and representing you in a mediation or hearing. The staff at your attorney’s office will bill you by the hour but on a lower hourly rate. The attorney will not be able to tell you exactly how much your case will cost but should be able to provide you with an estimate.
Additional questions about qualities to look for in a family law attorney? Contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC
Above all else, a family lawattorney is obligated to put your interests ahead of their own. This puts you in control of your case, even if it doesn’t always feel that way in the middle of a contested and difficult legal matter.
If you have questions about this subject or any other in family law please do not hesitate to contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC. Our licensed family law attorneys are available six days per week to discuss your questions and answer them in a comfortable, pressure free environment.
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Other Articles you may be interested in:
- Tips for hiring a divorce attorney in Texas
- Tips for hiring a divorce attorney in Texas, Part Two
- Hiring a Divorce or Family Lawyer in Spring, Texas
- Why do divorces cost so much in Texas?
- How Much Will My Texas Divorce Cost?
- 8 Tips for Reducing the Cost of a Divorce in Texas
- $300 Divorce Cost a Man $100,000 in Texas
- Low cost and affordable divorces, attorneys, websites and divorce Costs in Texas
- 6 things You Need to Know Before You File for Divorce in Texas
- SUCH AN EASY DIVORCE? THAT HUSBAND MAY LOSE HIS HOUSE!
Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC | Spring Divorce Lawyer
The Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC routinely handles matters that affect children and families. If you have questions regarding divorce, it's important to speak with a Spring, TX Divorce Lawyer right away to protect your rights.
A divorce lawyer in Spring TX is skilled at listening to your goals during this trying process and developing a strategy to meet those goals. Contact Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC by calling (281) 810-9760 or submit your contact information in our online form. The Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC handles Divorce cases in Spring, Texas, Cypress, Spring, Klein, Humble, Kingwood, Tomball, The Woodlands, Houston, the FM 1960 area, or surrounding areas, including Harris County, Montgomery County, Liberty County, Chambers County, Galveston County, Brazoria County, Fort Bend County and Waller County.