Insider Tips for Hiring the Right Divorce Attorney
If you are facing a divorce from your spouse you already know that there’s a lot to think about:
- Who will retain custody of your children?
- How will your children will receive financial support?
- How will marital assets such as property and retirement accounts will be distributed?
- How will a prenuptial agreement impact the outcome of your divorce?
During a divorce, everything that matters most to you is at stake. That’s why it’s essential that you hire the best possible divorce attorney to advocate for your interests. If you’ve done a web search for divorce lawyers in Houston you know that there are no shortage of firms who want your business.
But how do you know how to tell who’s the best divorce lawyer for the job?
Below, our Houston family law attorneys have provided five pro tips to keep in mind as you decide on hiring a divorce attorney.
1. Consider What Traits are Most Important to You
The first step to finding the best divorce lawyer is to define what qualities matter most to you in an attorney. Some important considerations include:
- Relevant Experience. You want to choose an attorney who not only has years of experience in dealing with divorces but also has years of experience handling cases like yours. Each family’s circumstances are unique. One family may be working through a high asset divorce and another more focused on custody arrangements relating to their children. Either way, you want to hire an attorney who experience handling cases that are similar to yours. Angela A. Stout of The Stout Law Firm, is Board Certified in Family law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, a testament to her skills, experience, and deep knowledge of family law.
- Success rate. Success rate is not always easy to gauge in the context of a divorce case. In a divorce action, there is rarely, if ever, a “winner” or “loser”. Instead, parties tend to focus on the ultimate resolution to their difficult situation. Therefore the most appropriate way we’ve found to gauge “success rate” is by looking at client satisfaction through testimonials and experiences. Please feel free to take a minute to review client testimonials relating to our practitioners on Avvo or Google as well as peer review ratings on Super Lawyers.
- Resources. While some divorce cases are very straightforward, others are harder to navigate, and may even require intervention and input from various experts. This means that you need to work with a lawyer who is not only well-connected, but also has the resources necessary to hire experts and organize your claims.
- Compatible Personality. Don’t overlook the importance of hiring a divorce attorney with a personality that meshes with your own. Your attorney will be working intimately with you over an extended time; make sure you like them and have faith in the fact that they are working for you and care about protecting your best interests.
2. Search for a Divorce Attorney on Trusted Online Sources
Once you’ve pinpointed the criteria you want in an attorney, a great way to find a lawyer is to search for one using a basic search engine, such as Google.
If your search returns more results than you can handle, narrow down some of the top results using the Texas Bar Association’s lawyer lookup service. This service also allows you to view a lawyer’s education, certifications, and even search for a lawyer based on language is spoken.
3. Get a Reference from a Family Member or Friend
Divorce is incredibly common, and chances are you know someone close to you who has gotten a divorce and worked with a great divorce lawyer during the process. If you’re struggling to find a lawyer that you really like or believe is qualified to handle your divorce case, ask your friends or family members for a referral.
4. Start with a Consultation
If you are looking for a divorce attorney in Houston, Sugar Land, Katy, or The Woodlands, it is strongly recommended that you set up a consultation first, or at least talk to the lawyer on the phone about your case.
You should be honest about your situation and what services you need, your expectations for how your case should be handled, etc. The lawyer should honestly tell you whether or not they are able to serve you given their caseload and experience level.
If not, they may be able to recommend a lawyer near you that meets your criteria and is available to take on your case.
5. Don’t Forget What’s at Stake
You’ll be more motivated to find the best divorce attorney for you – rather than just settling for “the cheapest” option – if you fully understand what’s at stake.
If your divorce is contested, you have a lot to lose if things don’t go your way, which is very possible if you’re not represented by a professional with years of experience. If your divorce case is not settled in your favor, you may lose out on:
- Valuable property, including a home or car;
- Future earnings from various pieces of property such as interest and dividends;
- Spousal maintenance;
- A reasonable child support award; or
- Custody of your children.
What’s more, the longer that your divorce case is drawn out, the more taxing it can be on you emotionally and financially. Working with a lawyer who understands this and is committed to minimizing your costs and the divorce timeline while refusing to settle for less than you deserve is critical.
Contact The Stout Law Firm for a Divorce Consultation Today
At The Stout Law Firm, PLLC, we understand what clients need in a divorce lawyer, and we have the reputation and success rate you would expect from a divorce law firm with more than a decade’s worth of experience.
Not only are our lawyers highly skilled and competent, they are also sympathetic to the emotional nature of divorce and sensitive to the fact that your life is about to change significantly. We take a personalized approach to each case. We will take the time to understand your goals, and work aggressively to achieve them.