I need a divorce lawyer, what criteria should I use to pick one?

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Hi everyone, 

I need a divorce lawyer, but I have no idea where to start to pick one. There are a few in my area, and I understand that s/he should be local so I can avoid paying him any travelling fees in the event that s/he will have to represent me in court, but other than that, what else should I look for? I have no idea. Do I just call them up and get a feeling for how they are? 

Thank you

Anna

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Ask for recommendations: travel costs are not going to be the most expensive thing about hiring a divorce lawyer.

Make a list of the points most pertinent to your situation. They are likely to fall within two main categories: what is the financial value at stake (your respective incomes and assets), what is the personal situation (kids / dependants, plus any relevant relationship issues, a need to get restraining orders etc)? As this is an expat site, the other key point will be for any special knowledge your lawyer may need: languages possibly (if your German isn't great) cross-border issues if you/your spouse have foreign interests (assets, nationalities...perhaps a foreign law may apply). 

Once you have those details, you can make the most of any calls with potential lawyers, to ensure you find someone most suitable for you. 

Finally, provided you can afford it, once you have a lawyer, let them do the arguing with your soon-to-be-ex for you. 

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also, like any service, ask what their experience is.  remember, you are interviewing them for a job.  have they represented one or 100 cases?  ask for specifics about costs and payments.  remember most of all, they charge for their time.  they are not your friend to sit with and chat.  they loved contested divorces which take time.

if you're smart, you and your spouse should come to an agreement before you see a lawyer.   you can go broke being "right".

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...oh yes, and at the start of your conversation, ask how much they cost, and when they start charging. For example, I think it is unreasonable for them to charge you for the time you are providing them with the initial details of your claim and considering whether or not to instruct them (it is sadly not uncommon for that time to be included in the first bill if you haven't agreed at the outset).

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On 5/5/2021, 3:40:21, catjones said:

also, like any service, ask what their experience is.  remember, you are interviewing them for a job.  have they represented one or 100 cases?  ask for specifics about costs and payments.  remember most of all, they charge for their time.  they are not your friend to sit with and chat.  they loved contested divorces which take time.

if you're smart, you and your spouse should come to an agreement before you see a lawyer.   you can go broke being "right".

If the lawyer carries the title Fachanwalt Familienrecht you know that they have specialised in Familienrecht. You can only carry the title if you participated in a training and handled at least xx amount of cases.

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I used SSW, which is now web-partner.de. They are by Goetheplatz. I was pretty happy with my service and they didn’t charge more than other lawyers sometimes do (I don’t exactly know about this, but they commented that my ex was paying a lot and I’m not sure how they knew that, but they did; even my ex commented that his lawyer was costing him a fortune, meanwhile I spent what I thought was fair). 

 

I didn’t interview them or anything. I went on the consultation a year and a half prior just to find out my rights and then used them when my ex pulled the trigger. I wasted my consultation fee, but that was fine. At least I wasn’t totally in the dark. 

 

You have to keep in mind they aren’t there to listen to ‘he said, she said’ stuff. Just get your assets divided and kids taken care of and that’s it. 

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