What Makes A Divorce Lawyer?


In the event that you haven't before now, chances are that sometime in your own lifetime you will want to retain the services of legal counsel. With the help of my discussion with Tampa Attorney Christina Mesa, here's a selection of answers to frequent as well as worthwhile questions.


1. QUESTION: How do I know if I need a lawyer?
ANSWER: If you have recently been served with a Summons and related documents (Complaint, Petition, Motion), you really should endeavor to find legal advice right away. Papers filed in court that commence a lawsuit call for responses that involve particular deadlines; missing those deadlines could compromise your defense, limit or avoid your recovery. Some issues by statute involve a "pre-suit" period that allow you to take into account the legal issues and probable resolution before a lawsuit is filed. Similarly, seeking a lawyer as quickly as possible is recommended.

2. QUESTION: Do I have to hire an attorney in the county where the issue occurs?
ANSWER: No. Many lawyers or attorneys practice in other counties and other states, based upon on their licensure for the latter. Having knowledge in the county in which the matter will be litigated is important as that lawyer will have a comfort level with the community courthouse personnel, lawyers (likely opposing lawyer) and judges. One consideration in retaining an attorney away from area wherein the matter occurs is cost of journey time. Some attorneys don't charge for travel, others offer a reduced rate or preserve a billable rate for all work conducted. Discuss that question with each lawyer consulted.

3. QUESTION: Precisely what is mediation?
ANSWER: Mediation is a course of action whereby the parties to the issue present at an agreed place with their counsel (if retained) and a selected mediator to try and resolve all or some of the problems involved. Mediators are to be unrelated to all participants and the litigation at issue, are to stay impartial amongst the parties and their counsel, and maintain the confidential nature of the conference to recommend settlement and resolution. Usually the parties share the cost of the mediation equally but other arrangements can be made if all parties are in agreement in advance of the conference. Mediation is typically required in just about every case filed in court and prior to a trial is held.

4. QUESTION: What type of attorney at law do I need?
ANSWER: Again, like other businesses, attorneys may concentrate in a certain or more than one area. Similarly, law offices may specialize, provide general legal needs or offer services in several specific areas of law. Trial attorneys handle cases involving lawsuits; family law lawyers handle separation and divorce, child custody/visitation, child support, alimony and related matters; general practitioners handle most matters. Some areas of law are very complex, like bankruptcy or taxation; some are delineated by statute, as in worker's compensation. Any attorney can talk about your specific issue, determine if he or she is prepared to take care of such matters or inform you of the necessity to consult with another in a specialised area.


5. QUESTION: How may I make sure my attorney is handling my issues?
ANSWER: Every good attorney keeps track of his time (fees) and expenditures (costs). Your retainer arrangement should include a affirmation of how the attorney bills his clients - once a month, quarterly, etc. You may also track your case in some jurisidictions that supply on-line access to case dockets. If the county has that established, you're wise to occasionally review the docket and see what activities have taken place by your counsel and the other party/counsel. You should also feel comfortable getting in touch with your attorney at intervals to ascertain the status of the issue, understanding you'll likely be billed for these communications.

6. QUESTION: Just how do I select an attorney or lawyer?
ANSWER: Legal dilemmas are as vast as those in other industries, such as medicine, construction, finance, etc. and might be just as complex. To protect your legal rights and remedies, the ideal practice would be to investigate your area of need and research what legal professionals are accessible to assist you. A referral from somebody you know and admire can bring a personal element to the consideration to hire an attorney but really should not be the exclusive reason counsel is chosen. Look into the attorney's background of education, practical experience and area(s) of practice. Asking important questions should be urged in this process. Self-help can be empowering but may also limit or negate your recovery. Hiring a lawyer should be contemplated with exactly the same degree of thought and consideration as that given to the choice of a medical doctor, accountant, financial expert or therapist.

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