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The dos and don'ts of hiring a Massachusetts divorce lawyer


The person who people hire to handle their divorce case will play a vital role in its outcome, so it is important that they choose the right lawyer.

Unfortunately, not all marriages in Eastern Massachusetts, and throughout the state, are meant to stand the test of time. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the divorce rate in Massachusetts as of 2011 was 2.7 for every 1,000 people. For many, making the decision to divorce is one of the most difficult of their lives. By the same token, deciding who to hire to represent them is often one of the most important decisions people will make at the end of a marriage. There are things people can do, however, to help ensure they choose the right divorce lawyer for them.

Don't pick a random name off of a list

There are numerous legal representatives who practice family law. Sometimes, people are inclined to simply select one of the names off of a list. It is important for those who are divorcing to keep in mind that the person who they hire to represent them may have a significant impact on the outcome of their case.

Thus, it is advisable for people to ask for recommendations from those who they trust. This may include family members or friends who have gone through a similar experience. Additionally, people may consider asking professionals, such as accountants and other attorneys, to suggest a divorce lawyer who they have worked with or know to be qualified.

Do research potential candidates

Once people have gotten recommendations, they must still ascertain whether an attorney is right for them and their situation. Therefore, it is suggested that they research the divorce lawyers who they are considering. The American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers points out that looking into a legal representative's credentials may help people to assess his or her professional competence.

Don't fall for bold promises

In some cases, attorneys may make bold promises to potential clients in an effort to win their business. It may seem enticing to go with attorneys who say they can get people everything they want, such as alimony or full physical custody of the kids. However, they may just be telling people what they want to hear, and may not be able to follow through on these guarantees. Consequently, people should be wary of those who make gallant claims, and instead, opt for an attorney who offers them sage, realistic advice.

Do consider an attorney's temperament

Sometimes, legal representatives will take on their clients' feelings toward their spouses. This may seem comforting and lead people to believe that they and their attorneys are on the same page. A CNBC report cautions that choosing a divorce lawyer who shares their feelings may not be beneficial, however.

At the end of a marriage, people may be blinded by emotions. Therefore, it is important that they have an attorney representing them who sees the situation without bias. This may help reduce the conflict, ensure they receive logical guidance and expedite the settlement process.

Don't forget about the costs

There is no set cost for the fees charged by divorce lawyers. So, the expenses associated with people's legal representatives may vary significantly. CNBC suggests that people ask about an attorney's fees up front. This may help them to prepare themselves for the expenses or rule out a divorce lawyer that they cannot afford.

Do make a choice for the future

Going through a divorce is often a challenging experience for people in Massachusetts, and elsewhere. Therefore, people who are considering a divorce may find it of benefit to hire a legal representative to handle their cases. An attorney may help ease the stress and guide divorcing spouses through the legal process.

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