Why You Need A Divorce Lawyer

In the instance that you haven't before now, probably sometime in your lifetime you will need to retain the services of an attorney at law. Thanks to my interview with Tampa Lawyer Christina Mesa, this is a selection of answers to typical along with imperative questions.

1. QUESTION: How do I know if I will need a lawyer or attorney?
ANSWER: If you have been recently served with a Summons and related documents (Complaint, Petition, Motion), you really should endeavor to look for legal guidance immediately. Papers filed in court that begin a lawsuit require responses that involve particular deadlines; missing out on those deadlines could damage your defense, reduce or avoid your recovery. Some matters by statute involve a "pre-suit" time period that allow you to consider the legal issues and probable resolution before a lawsuit is filed. Similarly, seeking legal counsel at the earliest opportunity is recommended.

2. QUESTION: Do I need to hire an attorney or lawyer in the county where the problem 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 wherein the matter will be litigated is important as that lawyer will have a level of comfort with the neighborhood courthouse personnel, attorneys (likely opposing counsel) and judges. One consideration in retaining an attorney outside the area in which the matter takes place is cost of travel time. Some attorneys don't charge for travel, others give you a reduced rate or maintain a billable rate for all work carried out. Clarify that question with each lawyer consulted.

3. QUESTION: Precisely what is mediation?
ANSWER: Mediation is a process whereby the parties to the issue present at an agreed site with their counsel (if retained) and a chosen mediator to try and solve all or a number of the concerns involved. Mediators are to be unrelated to all participants and the litigation at issue, are to remain impartial between the parties and their counsel, and maintain the confidential aspect of the conference to inspire settlement and resolution. Usually the parties share the cost of the mediation evenly but other arrangements may be made if all parties are in agreement ahead of the conference. Mediation is generally required in just about every case filed in court and prior to a trial is held.

4. QUESTION: What kind of attorney do I need?
ANSWER: Again, like other industries, attorneys may specialise in a specific or more than one area. Similarly, law firms may specialize, offer general legal needs or provide services in a few specific areas of law. Trial lawyers handle cases involving lawsuits; family law attorneys handle divorce cases, child custody/visitation, child support, alimony and associated matters; general practitioners handle nearly all matters. Some areas of law are very specialized, like bankruptcy or taxation; some are delineated by statute, like worker's compensation. Any attorney should be able to go over your specific issue, determine if he/she is prepared to take care of such matters or advise you of the necessity to consult with another in a specialized area.

5. QUESTION: How can I make sure my attorney is handling my issues?
ANSWER: Every good attorney 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 may even keep track of your case in some jurisidictions that provide on-line access to case dockets. If the county has that established, you're wise to periodically review the docket and see what events have transpired by your lawyer and the other party/counsel. It's also advisable to feel comfortable contacting your lawyer at intervals to learn the status of the matter, knowing you will likely be charged for these communications.

6. QUESTION: Just how do I select an attorney or lawyer?
ANSWER: Legal subjects are as vast as those in other industries, such as medicine, construction, finance, etc. and tend to be just as perplexing. To protect your legal rights and remedies, the best practice would be to research your area of need and research what legal professionals are available to help you. A referral from somebody you know and admire can add a personal element to the consideration to hire an law firm but should not be the singular reason counsel is chosen. Research the attorney's background of education, expertise and area(s) of practice. Asking a lot of questions should be urged in this process. Self-help could be empowering but may also restrict or negate your recovery. Hiring a lawyer should be considered with the same degree of thought and consideration as that given to the choice of a doctor, accountant, financial specialist or therapist.

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