When you choose to hire a family law attorney to settle litigation matters, it is a major decision. An attorney that handles family law cases becomes privy to a lot of your personal information regarding your personal life, financial situation, and your children.
Not only do you want to hire an attorney that you can trust, but you want an attorney with the skill and experience that can handle your case the way you want, and that has the best chance of getting the best possible resolution. While there are several things that you can discuss and ask a family law attorney before choosing them as your legal counsel, read below about the three must ask questions before making a final decision.
How Often Do Your Cases Go To Trial?
Out of all the divorce cases that are filed, roughly 1% to 2% actually go to trial. The reason that this is important to know is that you can then make the decision about whether this is the right family law attorney for you. Not all divorces are as messy as the stereotype seems to make it, most spouses want to come together and achieve a resolution using mediation rather than a trial. Mediation allows both spouses to have a say whereas a trial leaves it up to the courts. If the attorney you are talking with talks about always pushing their cases to trial, they may not be the right attorney for you.
On the other end, if you have an upcoming trial date and it is a contested divorce or something that can’t be solved with mediation – you don’t want an inexperienced attorney that has no trial experience. Asking an attorney how often their divorce cases go to trial is a great indicator of whether it is the right firm to legally represent you in your case.
Who Handles My Case?
For most firms, it isn’t uncommon for you to discuss your case with a partner of the firm during your legal consultation. After the consultation, the partner may handle your case off to another attorney. Some firms have specific attorneys that handle the consultation from the outset. Both aren’t uncommon, nor is it poor practice, it is just the way it is. However, you may have a preference regarding which attorney you felt more comfortable with, which is why you should establish who your legal representation will be that way you know what to expect.
This can also be the chance where you can establish what you want and see what they can do in order to meet those needs. There could be a younger attorney who doesn’t have much experience that oversees the day-to-day issues and is your point of communication, but court appearances will be handled by a senior attorney with trial experience. None of this is cut and dry, which is why establishing your wanted immediately is always to your benefit and nothing will come as a surprise during this process.
What Are The Specific Details of Billing?
One of the most important questions to ask is how your billing will be handled regarding your case. Most family law matters include an initial retainer, expenses through the firm, and any court fees. The rate of the initial retained varies based on what work needs to be done, the challenges regarding your cases, and a variety of factors.
You should ask about what work will be handled by the assisting staff, their billing rates, and how to address the firm’s expenses. Additionally, filing fees that are charged by the court may be part of the initial retained. Consider asking questions about specific costs, too.
The more you understand the specific details of billing, the easier it will be to understand the monthly bill, and gives you a better idea of what services that you are paying for.
If you have questions for a family law attorney in the Edwardsville, Illinois area, contact our attorneys at Elovitz Law Office to schedule your legal consultation.