While America is among the top ten countries for divorce rates, we actually average just over 4 divorces per 1,000 residents. But regardless of national placement or the reasons for your individual divorce, the final decision can be an emotionally taxing one for everyone involved. Michigan is a no-fault state which adds a layer of ease to the divorce process, but it can still be an emotional and financial strain if you try to cut too many corners. Do-it-yourself options may seem appealing, but they’re often little better than choosing the wrong lawyer altogether. And let’s face it, the last thing you want is to add more time, money, and stress to an already difficult situation. Fortunately, there are some easy tips for choosing the right divorce attorney.
Get Referrals from Trusted Contacts
Chances are you have some friends, loved ones, or even some close co-workers who have gone through a divorce. Now is not the time to be shy. You need some answers and you’d be surprised how willing most people are to share their experiences. So why not let them help you out a bit? Ask how complex their case was compared to yours. Discuss what they liked and disliked about their attorney and the procedure. Be sure to also ask about the attorney who handled their spouse as there will always be stories and opinions there.
Do Your Own Research
Never just trust word of mouth with matters as important as your future security. Dive deeper than the info given. Look to Google. Call the Bar Association to check on the attorney’s credentials and standings. And get yourself emotionally and mentally prepared for the life-changing task ahead. A little pre-planning goes a long way.
Interview Potential Divorce Attorneys
Once you get your divorce attorney selection down to about three choices, it’s time to begin the interview process. Now, remember: this is your rodeo and they will be trying to impress you. But the right attorney shouldn’t have to try too hard as their accolades, experience, and personality should be the winning trifecta. The right attorney will share your basic philosophy on divorce. They’ll be affordable and respectful. And they’ll provide the skills and knowledge to make you comfortable and secure without making empty promises.
Pay Attention to Red Flags
Many attorneys will say whatever a potential client wants to hear to seal the deal. But there are never any guarantees, so don’t believe anyone who says otherwise. Note how they treat you. Are they focusing on your appointment or taking calls and otherwise distracted? Freely offering referrals is a good sign, but any attorney who brags about high-profile clients and the sordid or confidential details of those cases is likely to show you the same disrespect. This is more than just business to you. It’s your life.
Take Inventory and Make an Appointment
Once you’ve completed your appointments, you should know who fits your needs best. Now take some time and be honest with yourself. Do they make you feel comfortable, secure, and not intimidated? Did they listen to you and understand your needs or simply sing their own praises? Did they suggest a practical game plan? And did they tell you anything you didn’t want to hear? That last one’s a trick question as it’s a good thing. After all, unreasonable expectations likely paved the way to your Michigan divorce. You deserve honesty, integrity, and real effort. When you’re ready for that, give us a call.