Choosing a divorce attorney is an important decision regardless of whether you are initiating a divorce or responding to one filed by your spouse. The primary difference is in the timeframe available for choosing. The spouse initiating a divorce has the luxury of time in selection. The spouse responding after being served a Divorce Complaint has 20 days to respond, which puts unnecessary pressure on the selection process.
Most clients choose a divorce attorney recommended to them. This is a very viable method for an initial selection, but I recommend that more is needed. A successful attorney/client relationship is based on a meeting, discussion of strategy and business terms, as well as a genuine comfort and confidence in the attorney. When selecting, clients assume an attorney’s competency and sometimes let the recommendation alone sway their decision. I suggest that the choice is based as much on the recommendation as on your intuition about whether you can work with the attorney you are interviewing.
In my experience of handling cases in various areas of the law, clients change divorce attorneys more than other practice areas. On many occasions, I am the second or third attorney handling a divorce case. As you can imagine, the change of counsel is both costly and disruptive, but motivated by a client’s deep dissatisfaction with the attorney’s lack of attention, poor results, billing issues, lack of trust or a possible host of other factors. It is always my goal to be the attorney to finish the case, regardless of where I am in the sequence.
When selecting the attorney that guides you to the next phase of your life, try hard to eliminate the risk of dissatisfaction and choose carefully.
Hindell S. Grossman, Esq.
Grossman & Associates, Ltd.