Selecting a Divorce Attorney in Orange County, California
Selecting a Divorce Attorney for your divorce can be an overwhelming experience and one of the most stressful periods in any person’s life. The resulting court orders and the terms of your divorce settlement will not only cost you time and money, they can also change the way that your future will turn out.
With so much riding on your divorce, finding the right attorney to help you get through it may seem like a tough decision. You will need to find an attorney who has experience working with those in divorces similar to yours, and one who fits your budget, fits your needs, and will take the time to get to know your family and your goals.
Know What you Want From your Divorce
You have so many options when it comes to your divorce. Prior to hiring a lawyer, ask yourself a few questions.
• How do you want to determine the terms of your divorce?
• What is your divorce budget?
• What needs to be determined in your divorce?
• Are you on good terms with your significant other?
• Do you have a good understanding of your finances?
• What do you want for your children?
• Will child support, partner support, spousal support or family support be a part of your plan?
When it comes to determining the terms of your divorce, understand that depending the way you choose to create the terms, you may need more or less assistance from a divorce attorney in California.
So, What Should You Look for in a Divorce Attorney in California?
Find an attorney who has experience in family law and divorce, specifically the areas of family law that are involved in your divorce.
Depending on the specifics of your case, you may look for an attorney who has varying specialties. Prior to hiring your attorney, you will have a consultation either over the phone or in person, where you can discuss your needs with your lawyer.
For example, if you are interested in alternative dispute resolution, you will need to find a lawyer who has training in that area. If you and your spouse want to try mediation, you may only need an attorney for consulting, but you can also choose to hire a mediator who is also an attorney. Mediation requires special training, so you will need to find an attorney who has had the appropriate training.
If child custody or child support are major issues in your divorce, you may look for a divorce lawyer who has experience in custody disputes, or one who you can work with in the future so that you can modify child custody and child support orders as your child grows.
Know your budget, and find a lawyer who you can afford, or better yet, one who is willing to work with you to solve your divorce within your budget.
Every person should discuss their divorce with an attorney. Remember that newer, less experienced divorce attorneys tend to cost less than older or more experienced divorce lawyers. Do not dismiss a younger attorney just because he or she is new to the profession; working with an up and coming divorce lawyer means that he or she probably has the most modern education and understands the newest laws that could affect your case.
This may be especially true with same sex divorces and ending a registered domestic partnership in California.
Style and Likeability
While working with a nice divorce attorney may not be the most important quality, keep in mind that you will be spending a lot of time with your lawyer, and depending on him or her to help determine your future.
Your California divorce attorney should ask you questions about your case and what you want out of the divorce, keep you informed about changes in your case, update you as your options may change, and treat you as a person, not just one of their numerous cases.
What are Some Potential Red Flags During a Search for a Divorce Attorney?
Although you may find lots of options while searching for a divorce attorney, watch out for a few red flags that could signal the attorney you have found may not be the best option.
An attorney who tells you what he or she thinks you want to hear may just be after your money, and could not have your best interests in mind. Remember that your divorce could alter the course of your life. An attorney should act like he or she cares, even though being a divorce lawyer is only his or her job.
Your lawyer should discuss your case, not just his or her past successes or cases. You do want to look for a lawyer who has some experience in cases similar to yours, but those experiences should not be the focus of your time with your lawyer. Make sure that you are meeting with a lawyer, not just a legal assistant who works in your attorney’s office.
It is handy to have an attorney who will always answer your calls; however, make sure that your lawyer respects your time with him or her and is not constantly taking calls from others during that time. Expect that your lawyer will respond to your calls promptly if he or she does not answer when you call.
During a divorce, you may want to do everything you can to get what you want and leave your significant other with nothing, but choose a lawyer who only participates in legal and ethical business practices and follows the law. He or she may lose their license if caught, but if the rest of your life could turn out vastly different if your case does not go well.
In Summary, selecting a divorce attorney can be stressful if you do not know where to begin. It is helpful to begin your search by speaking with family and friends who may have used a divorce attorney. If you do not know anyone who can refer you to a reputable attorney you will probably want to research online.
Researching online can be made easy by knowing what area you will be searching for an attorney in. In addition, you will want to know your price range and what money you will have available to allocate to attorney services. When calling for a consultation you will want to inquire regarding the price and the steps involved in filing for divorce. Moreover, researching online will help to narrow your search when attempting to select a divorce attorney that will be the right match for you.
If you would like to take the next steps toward retaining a divorce attorney please call today to schedule an appointment to consult with an attorney. For additional information regarding family law and divorce please contact your local family law attorneys. Please call Yanez & Associates at 714-971-8000 for your free initial consultation. We look forward to assisting you with your family law or divorce matter.