How To Choose A Divorce Attorney
You are either fortunate or unfortunate, to live in Ohio when you are in need of a divorce — because there are many lawyers who practice divorce law. This makes finding a lawyer who can represent you in a divorce easy, but finding the right lawyer can be difficult. Therefore, we want to provide you with a few things to consider during your search.
First, consider the lawyer’s personality, work ethic, helpfulness, and responsiveness — make sure this is someone you can work with for many months if your case takes an unexpectedly complicated twist. And, ask yourself, was it easy to set an appointment with this lawyer, is the office friendly and helpful to their clients, is the lawyer able to clearly articulate what happens in a divorce, and does the lawyer offer modern conveniences. While little issues like these seem like something small, picture yourself a few months into your case on a busy weekend with an invoice and a quick case question – would your life not be better if you could log online to handle things instead of calling your lawyer and driving to the post office?
Second, consider the lawyer’s experience in the field you are hiring them for – lawyers with 40 years of experience of general casework might not have the same level of experience as a lawyer who has worked only on divorces for a much shorter period of time.
Third, consider a lawyer’s reputation online. When you hire contractors, you look for references and complaints online. You should not consider hiring a lawyer any differently. Some good websites to check for references are martindalehubbell.com, avvo.com, and superlawyers.com; although, there is a multitude of sites for former clients to list complaints available. Of course, it is up to you to see determine if the reviews appear trustworthy or the complaints legitimate.
Fourth, consider whether the lawyer is able to provide you with a general synopsis of what can be expected in your case and the estimated total cost. While few lawyers will guarantee how much time your case will take, those with experience can provide you estimates.
Fifth, consider whether you need a lawyer for your case. Simple cases can often be handled pro se with the assistance of the county’s local law library (almost every county has one staffed with knowledgeable people) or with forms purchased online from a reputable seller. But, also understand that an attorney can make a difference in giving you the information you might not find in books or offer insight into common problems with a settlement you might not be thinking of.
Sixth, consider the estimated cost, but make sure you speak with enough lawyers to know which are underestimating in hopes of securing your business, only to find new issues that will cost more once your case is underway. Once you select counsel, changing is difficult because of time and money. So, pick one that quotes a reasonable price in exchange for the value they are providing.
When you are looking for lawyers to schedule appointments with, you can look to a variety of sources. These include referrals from friends and family, referrals from other professionals you know, referrals from your state bar or local bar association, topic-related websites, and online lawyer referral services. However, be sure to meet with the lawyer to make sure you are a good fit with them– hiring counsel is a very personal decision that should not be left to a website’s recommendation. If you are ready to move forward with that process, we ask you to consider using our services.