The important and perturbing decision to end your marriage is not an easy one. Unfortunately, marriages fail for many reasons. If you are contemplating divorce and want to understand the process in Texas, your first step should be about consulting an attorney. While a DIY divorce may seem easy, you could end up making mistakes that can impact your life ahead. A skilled attorney can minimize friction, encourage mediation, and advise you on the key aspects to handle the divorce better. If you are hiring a divorce lawyer in Houston for the first time, here are some key questions you need to ask.
Questions related to experience
You don’t need any random lawyer – You must hire an attorney specializing in family law. When it comes to experience, you can ask questions like –
- How long have you been practicing as a family law and divorce lawyer in Texas?
- What percentage of your cases are related to divorces?
- Have you represented clients at trial?
Most divorce matters in Texas are settled outside of court, but if your divorce requires a trial, you need a lawyer who can handle that.
Questions related to the case
Next, ask the attorney about their overview of your divorce matter. You can ask questions like –
- What is your current caseload like?
- What do you think would become serious points of contention in my divorce?
- What is your general assessment of my divorce?
- What are my rights?
- Can I seek alimony (Called “maintenance” in Texas)?
- Can I have the right to my spouse’s medical insurance?
- What would be your strategy for my case?
- What do you expect of me?
These are some of the simplest questions you can ask for the first meeting.
Questions related to fee
Most divorce lawyers in Texas charge an hourly rate, but it depends on the facts of the case. You can ask two very basic questions related to this –
- What would be your ballpark fee estimate?
- What are the other costs that I need to pay?
You may also want to know if the lawyer has worked with your spouse’s attorney in the past. Even when you and your spouse agree on the divorce, both cannot have the same divorce lawyer. Hire a lawyer who is patient and experienced. They need to be open to discussing the facts of the case and must offer the support that clients need to tide through the tough times. Also, don’t forget to ask the lawyer about their work beyond divorce cases.