One of the worst situations you can find yourself in as a divorcee is to be trapped with a lawyer who is working counter to your interests, who doesn’t understand what you’re trying to accomplish, or who doesn’t communicate with you.
There are lots of great divorce lawyers in Philadelphia, and in all the areas where we serve clients. So how can you tell if one of our divorce lawyers, or any of these professionals, is the right one to serve your needs?
Here are some ways you can tell if the divorce lawyer is about to hire is going to be a good choice.
The lawyer’s review profile makes you feel confident.
Don’t just look at a lawyer’s star ratings. There are two other things you need to consider as you evaluate a lawyer’s review profile.
First, how many reviews does he or she have? A 5-star lawyer with just two or three reviews may be great, but that lawyer hasn’t really been tested yet. A 5-star lawyer with dozens or even hundreds of reviews has delivered a consistent performance again and again.
Second, look at what the reviews are actually saying. What are people praising? Are these qualities you, personally, care about?
The lawyer’s philosophy of divorce matches your own.
If your personal philosophy of divorce is that you need to go through the jugular and litigate this case to the hilt, then you need a lawyer who is ready, willing, and eager to do that. Or, at least, a lawyer who agrees it’s appropriate to do that in your specific case.
But if you’re looking for a more low-key divorce experience, where your goals are to get it over with in a reasonable time frame, at a reasonable rate, with a reasonable settlement, then you need a lawyer who understands that and who will not try to push you into court unless it’s absolutely necessary to do so.
Some lawyers will try to push just about each and every case into court. It’s more lucrative for them. And that’s when you can start to feel trapped…feeling uneasy about the direction the case is going in, but unsure what to do because the lawyer is supposed to be the expert.
See also: Is Divorce Always Expensive?
When you ask the lawyer about his or her approach to communicating with you, he or she is able to answer in a clear, concise, and realistic way.
There is no such thing as a lawyer who answers every call immediately. Sometimes we’re with other clients. Sometimes we’re in court. Sometimes we’re deep in the research process.
But it’s at least important to pin the lawyer down on when he or she might return your calls or emails. Within 24 hours? By the end of the week if it’s not urgent, within 24 hours if it is? Can the lawyer tell you with certainty it’s easier to communicate via email, or do you get a vague answer when you ask?
You should be able to set clear expectations with your attorney about how and when you’ll be able to speak to them.
The lawyer is someone you feel personally comfortable with.
You don’t want to meet with every lawyer in town, but after you’ve chosen out your top three by doing internet research it’s a good idea to schedule some face-to-face time. This gives you the opportunity to get a preliminary opinion on the case, and to ask the questions about philosophy and communication that will become so important to your final decision.
But you also need to like your lawyer. You’ll be spending a lot of time with him or her. You’re trusting this person to handle one of the toughest times in your life, and to handle some of the toughest decisions you’ll ever make.
You need to get along.
Want to find out if you can get along with one of our attorneys? Schedule your free consultation today.