Questions to Ask When Hiring Baltimore Divorce Lawyers
It’s important to start interviewing Baltimore divorce lawyers as soon as you start thinking about divorce. There are many considerations and concerns in every divorce, and an experienced attorney can help you make the best choices.
Divorce attorneys can be found in Eastwood, St. Josephs, and every neighborhood around Baltimore, but your choice of a divorce lawyer in Baltimore shouldn’t be left to chance. All attorneys are not the same, and you should choose an attorney with the right personal and professional qualities for you.
If you live in Baltimore and divorce may be in your future, this article lists some questions that will help you learn which attorney is a good match for you.
Consulting with Baltimore Divorce Lawyers
Your first meeting with a divorce lawyer in Baltimore is called an initial consultation. These meetings are normally free, and it’s common to have a consultation with more than one attorney before you make a final choice. During the consultation, you will:
- Discuss your marriage, family and property
- Talk about how to proceed
- Ask questions that help you choose an attorney
The lawyer’s opinions, suggestions and legal strategy will be based on what you say, so it’s important for you to be complete and honest.
Before each consultation, write a list of questions to ask the lawyer, and write down the answers during your discussion. You will want to review everything you learn later when it’s time to choose between Baltimore divorce lawyers.
There are several very important topics you should be sure to discuss.
Questions for a Divorce Lawyer in Baltimore About Experience
You should ask questions about three general subjects: The lawyer’s professional qualifications, the handling of your case and the cost of your divorce
- Where did you get your legal training?
- How long have you practiced divorce law in Baltimore, and is divorce and family law the primary focus of your practice?
- Are you a member of the Maryland and Baltimore Bar Associations?
- Are you familiar with the mediators, judges, staff and opposing attorneys we may face?
Questions About Your Divorce
- What is your strategy for my divorce?
- Why do you think this is the right way to proceed?
- What are the other possible options?
- What are the possible outcomes of these choices?
- Are there any factors that work in my favor?
- Are there any factors that work against me?
- Who in your firm will be handling my divorce?
- May I meet each person that will be working on my case?
- How often will you update me on the status of my divorce?
- Whom do I contact with questions, and how soon can I expect an answer?
Questions About Cost
- Do you charge a flat fee or by the hour?
- How much is your fee or hourly rate?
- Are costs and expenses extra?
- Do you require a deposit, or retainer, when you take my case?
- What is the estimate of my total bill?
- How often do you bill?
- Do you offer payment terms?
These questions are important, but they may not be the only ones that matter to you. Feel free to ask about additional topics as necessary, especially if you have special needs or circumstances.
Choosing Between Baltimore Divorce Lawyers
After your consultations are complete, you will have a great deal of information to consider. Read over your notes and think about the qualities of each lawyer. Ask yourself:
- Which lawyer has the most skill, experience with the legal system in Baltimore and divorce law expertise?
- Which lawyer has the most reasonable and thorough legal strategy?
- Which lawyer has fees you can afford?
- Which lawyer made you feel the most comfortable?
Remember that you can always contact an attorney or attorneys again if you’re having trouble with the decision. Most Baltimore divorce lawyers will be happy to answer additional questions, and many will provide client references if you ask. The opinions of former clients are often helpful in making a choice.
Make certain you have all the information you need, then choose the right divorce lawyer in Baltimore.