How To Choose A Divorce Attorney

If you find yourself at the beginning of the divorce process, you may feel a little overwhelmed – and that’s normal. Realizing that the end of your marriage is the best path forward is a difficult decision to make. Typically, it’s a very emotional time, and it can be hard to process all that lies ahead. Often, those who find themselves in this situation wonder where to even begin. Choosing an attorney is often the first, and most important step.

As you move forward with the divorce process, you want to feel calm and confident – not anxious and overwhelmed. Finding the right attorney to guide you through the divorce process is essential. Having the right attorney on your side can make all the difference between a divorce that proceeds smoothly, and one that is stressful. The question is, how do you go about making that decision? What factors are important? Let’s take a look together at a few helpful tips for finding an attorney that’s right for you.

Avoid Do-It-Yourself Divorce

Divorce can be expensive. The legal process itself can be costly, not to mention the financial burden of transitioning from one home and one set of bills to two. As a result, many people find themselves wondering if they can save money with a “do-it-yourself” divorce. Understandably, it’s a tempting idea. Advertisements often make do-it-yourself divorce seem easy and painless – but more often than not, that isn’t the case. In fact, representing yourself in a divorce can often end up costing you far more than you might realize. The truth is that the law can be complex. Often, small details can make a big difference. There are a multitude of deadlines and rules. Those who choose to represent themselves may overlook one of these important details – and as a result, miss out on the opportunity to fully assert their legal rights and adequately protect their interests. Hiring an attorney who knows and understands the law will help to ensure that you don’t find yourself in this situation.

Do Your Research

When it comes to finding a good attorney, it’s essential to do your research. Fortunately, there is a wealth of information online – reviews, testimonials, webpages, and more. All of this information can be extremely helpful to guide you toward identifying attorneys that might be a good fit. It can also be extremely helpful to talk to family and friends who may be able to recommend attorneys with whom they have had good experiences in the past. Reading information online can be helpful – but advice from family and friends that you trust can be invaluable. Make sure to ask about the details of their experiences, and what they liked (or didn’t like) about the particular attorney they used.

Consider Your Circumstances

As is the case in every profession, each attorney will have his or her own unique strengths and personality. If you feel that your divorce may be extremely contentious, you may perhaps want an attorney who is known for being a fierce and aggressive litigator. If you’re hoping to resolve your divorce amicably outside of the courtroom, however, you may want an attorney who is known for specializing in collaborative law, and creative, cooperative ways to resolve your issues.

Along these same lines, it can be tremendously helpful to consider your ultimate goals beforehand when it comes to what’s most important in your divorce case. Is equal custody of your children most important? For many parents, this is the case, and they want an attorney who understands and specializes in the dynamics and specific laws pertaining to custody issues. In other circumstances, property division might be an important issue, particularly if the couple has complex or high-value assets, or if they own a business, for example.

Ultimately, just as each couple is unique and different from any other, so too is every divorce. Thinking through your particular circumstances and the things that are most important to you and your family can be very helpful as you try to find the attorney who will best suit your needs.

Ask the Right Questions

As you meet with and interview potential attorneys, it can be helpful to keep in mind that you may have to meet with several before you find the one best suited to your needs. Often, attorneys will offer a free initial consultation, although some will charge a fee for the first meeting. It’s important to find that information out ahead of time and to come to the consultation prepared to ask questions and obtain the information you’ll need to make an informed decision about which attorney might be the best fit for your need. Some of the matters you may want to discuss with potential lawyers include:

  • Asking about the attorney’s experience. How long have they been practicing divorce law? Does the attorney have a particular specialty in the field of divorce? Does he or she prefer courtroom litigation? Do they specialize in mediation or collaborative law? Does the attorney only practice divorce law or is the practice focused on other areas as well?
  • Finding out who will be doing the majority of the work on your case. Will it be one particular attorney, or is the work shared by a group? This may be important to you if you want to be able to communicate primarily with one person.
  • Asking about the attorney’s fee structure. Although legal fees may be fairly consistent in any given locality, there will still be a range of costs, and different billing methods. Ask your attorney if he or she typically asks for a retainer up front, how often they bill, and whether or not payment plans are offered.
  • Discussing your options. Always be certain to share all of the important details regarding your circumstances with any attorney you may be considering. Ask the attorney what their general plan might be for proceeding with your case – whether or not they would recommend litigation, or mediation, for example. Doing so will allow you to think through different scenarios as to how your case might play out, and what might be best for your family.

While all of these tips are intended to be helpful, this is by no means an exhaustive list. It’s important to be thorough in your search and to trust your instincts as to which attorney might be the best fit. At The Law Office of Dustin McCrary, we’re here for you.


At The Law Office of Dustin McCrary, we know that when it comes to choosing a divorce attorney, you have many options – but not all options are equal. We strive for excellence, in every case, and for every client. We believe you deserve nothing less. At The Law Office of Dustin McCrary, divorce is all we do. We understand every aspect of the process, and we know the best legal strategies to pursue on your behalf. Divorce can be difficult – but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming. It’s a painful journey, but it can lead to a better chapter ahead. We’re here to help you get there. If you’re ready to get started, give us a call today. We look forward to speaking with you soon.

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