Divorce can be a complex and significant process. How you handle your Divorce can impact your life for the rest of your life, including your finances and your relationship with your children.
The process can be daunting for those who have never divorced. A reasonable divorce attorney will help you navigate the legal process and get the best possible outcome for your case.
It is crucial to choose the right divorce lawyer. Interview candidates carefully before you decide on a firm. Ask all the right questions and make sure to feel comfortable with them.
What are the Key Questions You Should Ask Your Divorce Lawyer?
These are some of the most important questions that you should ask.
1. How many divorce cases did you handle?
Divorce can be difficult. A divorce lawyer can help you to maintain your emotional stability by allowing you to choose the right attorney to represent you. They will guide and support you in your decision-making process and carefully consider all financial and legal repercussions.
2. How often are you able to reach an out-of-court divorce settlement agreement?
Sometimes you can’t avoid divorce proceedings going to court. It can mean that your divorce proceedings will be more complicated and likely cost you more.
It is better to reach a divorce settlement agreement outside of court. It means that you and your ex can get a compromise without having to go through lengthy litigation.
It is a sign of a great divorce lawyer if they have a track record of negotiating divorce settlements outside court.
3. What are your thoughts on collaborative Divorce?
Collaborative Divorce allows the exes to work together as partners rather than enemies and seek the best possible solution for their problems while maintaining friendly relationships.
While the collaborative approach might not work in all situations, it may be the best for you. However, if you want to maintain good relations with your ex, it’s worth talking with your divorce lawyer.
4. Do your contacts know my spouse?
You want your divorce lawyer to represent your best interests and not be biased toward your ex.
You should ensure that you confirm that the attorney you are considering hiring is not connected to any other parties.
5. How familiar are you with the local family court judges?
Look for a local divorce lawyer with a lot of experience in family court and a particular understanding of how judges rule in your area. It could be a massive advantage for your case. It can affect the way you present your case.
6. How have you dealt with LGBTQ divorce cases?
While this may only apply to some, if you’re not married to a straight man or woman who is straight-passing, an attorney with experience handling same-sex divorces will be a good choice. You may also want to seek out an LGBTQ-friendly attorney for your emotional well-being. Clagett & Barnett partners are proud to support LGBTQ people in any way they can, whether by upholding their marriage rights or guiding them through divorce proceedings.
7. Would you instead mediate and negotiate or go to trial?
As we have already mentioned, going to trial can often mean lengthy proceedings. You and your attorney must agree on all points. If your divorce attorney insists on trial, and you want mediation or negotiation, you will likely clash and work at odds. You might better find an attorney more in line with your wishes.
8. What experience do you have in handling financial settlements
In any divorce, money is bound to be an issue. You must ensure that your divorce lawyer is experienced in handling these matters.
9. Will your firm handle my case personally?
A divorce lawyer whose style and personality you like may be available. This person may be someone you “click” with and will enjoy working with you through your divorce proceedings.
What happens if you discover that you will not work directly with the attorney but with a junior partner of their firm? It can be very frustrating. It can be frustrating. Please verify that the attorney you speak to is the one who will be handling the majority of your case’s work and that you are communicating with them throughout the entire process.
10. How do I get in touch with you?
Naturally, there will be questions and concerns during your divorce proceedings. Sometimes you may feel overwhelmed and need to talk to someone.
It is reasonable to inquire how your attorney can reach you. Do they answer the phone? What about texts? What time will it take for them to respond to your emails?
Establish some expectations regarding communication before you hire a divorce lawyer.
11. How is your caseload?
This one is tricky. It is a tricky one. If your divorce lawyer handles 30 cases, you might need more time to provide the personal attention you desire.
However, it may indicate that your attorney has no other clients.
It would be best if you are looking for a divorce attorney who is open with you about their caseload and can make reasonable commitments that you are accessible, even while they work to balance the needs of their other clients.
12. How will I be kept informed?
Some clients want to know every detail about their case. Some clients want to know the latest developments. Discuss with your lawyer how and when you will receive updates. It is essential to establish clear expectations from the beginning.
13. How do you feel about sole custody versus joint custody
Your case will have a profound impact on both your life and the lives of your child.
It cannot be easy to choose the right path. It is possible to get the opinions of your lawyer. As a parent, you should know their opinions on the matter.
14. What is your charge for me?
It is crucial to discuss financial issues before you sign the dotted line. Ask your lawyer about their hourly billing rate and retainer fees. Next, ask your lawyer if they will charge a fee for any of their associates that help you with your case.
Note: Many lawyers will share this information to ensure you can afford them. However, if they don’t mention it, you should be ready to bring it up.
15. What about additional fees?
Ask your lawyer if you will be charged additional fees if your case goes to court. Lawyers must often pay additional costs to present their cases to the court. It is why hiring a lawyer is essential to help you negotiate an out-of-court divorce settlement agreement.
16. Would you petition the court to allow my spouse to pay my attorney’s fees?
Is your spouse financially dependent on you? Consider looking for an attorney who will petition the court to make your spouse pay all of the attorney’s fees.
Ask your lawyer about the impact of this on your case. If your spouse pays all of your attorney’s fees, it may increase the likelihood that your divorce lawyer will encourage you to seek a collaborative divorce.
17. How have you dealt with high-conflict divorces?
While this isn’t necessarily true for everyone, it might be relevant in some instances.
These cases require special skills, so hire a qualified divorce attorney.
18. What strategy would you use to help me?
Your divorce attorney will have a partial strategy during the initial consultation. They will likely give you some general insights based on your case details. Even if the discussion is only in general terms, having your divorce lawyer discuss strategy may be beneficial.
Also, inquire if you will have the chance to weigh in on the strategy and if you will be allowed to give your approval before it is implemented.
19. How long does it take to resolve my case
Many attorneys will offer an estimate of the date range. It will help you set realistic expectations and understand the process. This question, more than anything, can help you evaluate your attorney’s willingness to talk candidly with you and not just ramble on.
20. How is your life outside of your legal practice?
You choose a divorce lawyer because you can build a close relationship with them over several months. It’s natural to desire to be partnered with someone who is open to speaking freely and who can relate to you.
For example, clients feel more at ease with Cassie & Margo because they know that our attorneys are mothers and wives who are dedicated to their families and live balanced and happy lives outside of work.
Finding the Right Divorce Lawyer in Kentucky
Divorce is a significant step in your life and one that you shouldn’t do on your own. Instead, you should seek a qualified and skilled divorce lawyer to represent your interests, answer all your questions, and invest your time and energy in your emotional well-being.
Clagett & Barnett has a stellar reputation for helping people in Elizabethtown, Kentucky, get divorced. Reach out to us anytime to speak with one of our lawyers about your case.