Choosing a Divorce Attorney
Selecting the right attorney may be the most important decision in your divorce. For the next few months, your attorney is going to be one of your most trusted advisers and you want to make sure they are a good fit for you and your goals.
1. Your attorney should fit the process you select. If you want to keep things amicable, you should hire an attorney experienced in Collaborative Divorce or Mediation. If you want to litigate, hire a litigator. If you want to keep things amicable and you hire a litigator, you will likely end up litigating. Collaborative negotiation takes practice and involves different skills than litigation. Therefore, if you are committed to resolving your divorce out of court, then hire an attorney who has been trained to keep your divorce out of court.
Choosing the divorce process that best fits your goals is the first step. Click here to learn more about the importance of choosing the lawyer that fits your selected process. >
2. Experience. ALWAYS hire a full time divorce attorney. Divorces can be complicated, involving a wide range of issues involving taxes, real estate, pensions, parenting issues and a fair amount of psychology. The law is constantly changing and an experienced divorce attorney will use their knowledge in all of these areas to craft a settlement which benefits you.
3. Fees. Obviously, you need to hire an attorney who fits your budget. And do not be fooled into thinking that the higher the fees, the better the attorney. Also, you should ask if your attorney’s fees are refundable. The Michigan Supreme Court has held that attorneys may charge a non-refundable retainer fee. Therefore, if your case takes less work than anticipated, the attorney will be able to keep the unused portion of your retainer fee. At Pitler Family Law, we believe it is unethical to be paid for work we do not perform. Therefore, in all of our hourly billed cases, any unearned portion of your retainer fee will be returned to you.