Monday, September 23, 2019

What To Expect From Divorce Lawyers?

March 2, 2019  

If perhaps you haven’t previously, probably sometime in your life you’ll have to hire an attorney at law. Thanks to my consultation with Tampa Lawyer Christina Mesa, below is a listing of responses to basic and fundamental questions.

1. QUESTION: Do I want to hire an attorney at law in the county where the problem occurs?
ANSWER: No. Many attorneys practice in other counties and other states, based on their licensure for the latter. Having knowledge in the county in which the matter will be litigated is crucial as that attorney will have a comfort level with the local courthouse personnel, attorneys (likely opposing counsel) and judges. One matter in hiring an attorney outside the area wherein the matter takes place is cost of journey time. Some lawyers do not charge for travel, others offer a lowered rate or preserve a billable rate for all work carried out. Clarify that question with each lawyer consulted.

2. QUESTION: How am I able to be sure my attorney is resolving my issues?
ANSWER: Every good lawyer monitors his time (fees) and expenditures (costs). Your retainer agreement should include a confirmation of how the lawyer bills his clients – once a month, quarterly, etc. You can also keep track of your case in some jurisidictions that supply on-line access to case dockets. If the county has that available, you’re wise to occasionally review the docket and see what changes have transpired by your attorney and the other party/counsel. It’s also advisable to feel comfortable getting in contact with your lawyer at intervals to ascertain the status of the issue, understanding you’ll likely be billed for these communications.

3. QUESTION: Just how do I pick an attorney at law?
ANSWER: Legal subjects are as vast as those in other sectors, such as medicine, construction, finance, etc. and usually are just as perplexing. To protect your legal rights and remedies, the best practice is to investigate your area of need and research what attorneys are around to work with you. A referral from somebody you know and respect can add a personal element to the consideration to hire an lawyer but really should not be the sole reason counsel is selected. Research the lawyer’s background of schooling, expertise and area(s) of practice. Asking important questions should be urged in this process. Self-help can be strengthening but may also restrict or negate your recovery. Hiring a law firm should be considered with the same level of thought and consideration as that given to the pick of a medical professional, accountant, financial consultant or therapist.

4. QUESTION: How do I determine if I need a legal professional?
ANSWER: If you have been served with a Summons and related documents (Complaint, Petition, Motion), you should really endeavor to seek legal guidance right away. Documents filed in court that begin a lawsuit necessitate responses that involve specific deadlines; missing those deadlines could compromise your defense, reduce or avoid your recovery. Some concerns by statute involve a “pre-suit” time period that enable you to consider the legal issues and probable resolution before a lawsuit is filed. Similarly, seeking a lawyer as soon as possible is recommended.

5. QUESTION: What is mediation?
ANSWER: Mediation is a process whereby the parties to the case present at an agreed local with their counsel (if retained) and a selected mediator to try and solve all or a number of the issues involved. Mediators are to be unrelated to all participants and the litigation at issue, are to remain impartial in between the parties and their counsel, and continue maintaining the confidential structure of the conference to inspire settlement and resolution. Typically the parties share the charge of the mediation equally but other arrangements might be made if all parties are in agreement in advance of the conference. Mediation is normally required in every case filed in court and just before a trial is held.

6. QUESTION: What type of law firm do I need?
ANSWER: Again, like other businesses, lawyers may specialize in a certain or more than one area. Similarly, law offices may specialize, offer general legal needs or offer services in several specific areas of law. Trial attorneys handle cases involving lawsuits; family law lawyers handle divorce cases, child custody/visitation, child support, alimony and associated matters; general practitioners handle nearly all matters. Some areas of law are very complex, like bankruptcy or taxation; others are delineated by statute, like worker’s compensation. Any lawyer can talk about your particular issue, determine if he or she is prepared to handle such matters or inform you of the need to consult with another in a specialized area.

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