Questions to Ask When Interviewing Pittsburgh Divorce Lawyers
Choosing between Pittsburgh divorce lawyers may seem difficult. Good attorneys can be found in Oakland, Crafton and throughout Pittsburgh, and finding the right one is probably the last thing you want to think about right now. But the best way to move on is to choose a lawyer who can effectively represent you throughout your divorce and bring it to a successful end.
There’s more to selecting a Pittsburgh divorce lawyer than simply choosing one from the phone book. You need to find a lawyer with the right combination of professional qualifications and personal factors before you file divorce in Pittsburgh. This article will help you choose an attorney who’s a good match for you.
Consultations with Pittsburgh Divorce Lawyers
Before you file divorce in Pittsburgh, and before you hire a lawyer, you should meet with each attorney you’re considering. Your first meeting is called an initial consultation. During the consultation, you will discuss your situation and learn about the attorney.
You may cover a lot of topics during your meeting, so bring a pen and paper to take notes and be ready to tell the attorney about your situation. It’s also helpful to bring financial and other documents to your consultation, so the attorney can understand your marriage and what will be included in the divorce.
Finally, prepare a list of questions for the attorney. The consultation is your time to learn what you need to know to choose an attorney. Focus your questions on topics that will help you make that choice.
Topics to Discuss With A Pittsburgh Divorce Lawyer
Different Pittsburgh divorce lawyers have different levels of knowledge and skill. Questions about an attorney’s experience help you learn if the attorney has the right skill set for your case. You should discuss:
- The attorney’s background as a Pittsburgh divorce lawyer
- The attorney’s professional memberships, including the Pennsylvania and Allegheny County Bar Associations
- The attorney’s familiarity with the judges and staff of the Family Division of the Court of Common Pleas
- How many divorces the attorney has handled
- If the attorney concentrates his practice on divorce and family law
An attorney’s legal approach is very important to the success of your case. You need to find an attorney with an effective and reasonable strategy for handling your divorce. You should discuss:
- The lawyer’s assessment of your divorce
- The issues you will face when you file divorce in Pittsburgh
- The suggested legal strategy for your divorce
- The possible outcomes and their effect on you
- The good and bad points of your case
- The different stages of the divorce proceedings
Case management refers to how your divorce is handled on a day-to-day basis. Most of the work on your case will be done away from court, and you should understand how your divorce would move ahead. You should discuss:
- If the attorney at your consultation will be handling your divorce
- The members of the staff who will be assisting with your divorce
- Each person’s role in your case
- How often you will receive updates on your case
- Whom you can contact with questions
When you understand the cost of your divorce, you can choose an affordable Pittsburgh divorce lawyer and avoid surprises in the future. You should discuss:
- If the lawyer charges a single, flat fee or charges by the hour
- The amount of the fee or hourly rate
- The costs and expenses of your divorce
- If a deposit, or retainer, is required in advance
- Billing frequency
- Available payment terms
- The estimated total cost of filing divorce in Pittsburgh
Choosing a Pittsburgh Divorce Lawyer
When your consultations are complete, you’ll have a lot of information on each Pittsburgh divorce lawyer. Review your notes and ask yourself:
- Which attorney is the most qualified to handle my case?
- Which attorney gave me the best legal approach?
- Which attorney made me feel the most comfortable and confident?
- Which attorney can I afford?
Take these factors together to determine which lawyer is the best fit for you. If you have trouble with the decision, ask follow-up questions or ask the attorneys for client references. When you are fully informed and ready to proceed, choose an attorney and move ahead with your divorce.