Law Offices of Maribeth Blessing, LLC

866-603-8691 toll free

215-392-0849 local

contact Menu

Choosing Your Family Law Attorney

The attorney you hire to represent you in your divorce will have a major impact on the outcome of your case - choose wisely.

What Matters Most When Choosing A Lawyer

Local Knowledge

In Pennsylvania, the court systems vary from county to county. Each court has different filing requirements, timelines and general way of handling things. For example, some counties will require you to attend mediation or parenting classes before your divorce or custody case can be heard in court, others do not. If your lawyer isn't familiar with the county where your case is being handled, you are at a disadvantage. This lack of knowledge could cost you time and money, and even hurt the end result. Make sure the lawyer you choose knows the local court system.

Experience Handling Your Specific Legal Issues

Family law cases involve extremely personal aspects of your life, including your financial health and your relationship with your children. The decisions made during your case will impact you for years to come. Make sure your attorney has experience handling the specific legal issues you are facing, whether it be dividing a family business during divorce, obtaining child support for a special needs child, or any other issue that pertains to your divorce or custody issue.

A lawyer who is just out of law school may make big promises and offer discounted rates, but there is no substitute for the skills years of family law experience can provide.

A Record Of Success

How good is your lawyer? If you want to know, ask them about their track record. How many cases have they handled? What was the result? What do past clients have to say about the services they received? Research their website and look for client reviews. Check out their curriculum vitae and look at articles they have written and awards and honors they have received. Make sure they have kept up with continuing legal education to stay on top of the latest changes in the field of family law. All of these are good indicators of your lawyer's skills.

Someone You Connect With On A Personal Level

Your attorney's legal skills are extremely important, but it is also important that you feel comfortable with your lawyer. Family law involves very personal issues, such as money, property, parent-child relationships and family dynamics. If you don't feel comfortable discussing these issues with your lawyer, then he or she cannot do a good job.

It is also important your approach to dispute resolution aligns. If your attorney is a bulldog, pressuring you to litigate when you'd rather negotiate a solution, or vice versa, the relationship will not work.

Make Sure You Hire An Attorney

Do not try to represent yourself. You will be going up against someone with years of legal training and experience. The stakes are just too high. The best way to protect your financial and parental interests during family law disputes is to hire a lawyer.

5 Comments

I like the advice that you need to feel comfortable discussing personal issues with your lawyer. Your lawyer needs all the information they can get about the situation in order to present a good case. This is hard for them to do if you are evasive and keep things from them.

I agree that you should not try to represent yourself in court. You also mention choosing a lawyer that you can connect with on a personal level. I think that it's important to choose a local lawyer.

I like how you point out how important it is that you feel comfortable with your lawyer. Since you typically work with a lawyer during stressful and emotional situations, you would probably want one that is really understanding and sympathetic of your needs. I know that my sister is looking for a family law attorney, so I'll have to pass this along to her so she knows what to look for in one.

I like that you mentioned doing proper research on the person you are going to consider hiring. You want someone who is proven and has a good record of success. The more experience you can get the better.

I love what you said about how you shouldn't try to represent yourself in court. Like you said, you'll be going up against someone with years of legal training and experience. I've heard that the success rate goes up by 75% when someone chooses to hire the services of an attorney. Those are pretty good odds! I'll have to keep this information in mind if I'm ever needing to hire an attorney to help me on a case.

Leave a comment
Comment Information

we would love your feedback