Our 5-step Guide to Finding the Right Family Lawyer
Trying to find a family lawyer can be difficult; finding the right family lawyer for your family law matter is extremely important.
Not only do you want to feel comfortable with your lawyer, but you also need to be confident that they know their stuff!
You want to know that they will guide you through your matter and have a strategy and plan on how to achieve the best possible results/outcomes in your family’s best interests.
In this guide, we take you through the wide, varied area of Family Law, what it involves, and what you can expect when working with a family lawyer.
What does family law cover?
Family law covers many areas of law relating to the family unit including:
- Children’s matters – parenting orders, access to children
- Child support
- Property settlement
- Defacto relationships
- Spousal maintenance
- Family Dispute Resolution
- Collaborative Family Law
What do family lawyers do?
Family lawyers are lawyers who specialise in assisting families when relationships break down.
They provide advice to their clients about matters such as separation, divorce, property settlement, children’s arrangements, child support, spousal maintenance and Family Dispute Resolution.
A family lawyer will work with you to achieve the best possible outcome for you and your family across all of the above issues.
How to choose and find a family lawyer
Here are some tips on finding the right lawyer for you:
1. Find a Specialist, not a generalist practitioner.
Make sure you pick a firm that specialises in family law and not just a generalist firm that undertakes some family law work occasionally. Family law is a specialised area of law that should be practised only by those who are knowledgeable.
Find a family lawyer that knows what they are doing and can offer you specialised, tailored family law advice. Look for someone who is an Accredited Specialist in Family Law or a Senior Practitioner. This is the highest honour bestowed upon a lawyer. It is an acknowledgement of their level of skill in family law, meaning they have the highest level of knowledge compared to their peers.
While a generalist lawyer may know the basics, a specialised lawyer will know the ins, the outs, how to cross the t’s and dot the i’s. They know the system, the law, the other practitioners and can use that knowledge to get you the best results.
2. Ask around – try friends, family and even Facebook.
Some of the best referrals will come from strangers who have experienced what you are going through. Even though every family law matter is different, people in your local area will know the good lawyers.
You can also join some Facebook groups which are full of recommendations. Join any parenting or local Facebook group and we guarantee they will know who the quality lawyers are!
3. Do your research
Once you have asked around, do your own research to make sure you’re choosing a lawyer that’s right for YOU. Check their website, look at their Google Reviews and source as much information as you can about the firm and the family lawyers.
Look at how long a lawyer has been practising, what their areas of expertise are and see if there is any particular lawyer at the firm that appeals to you.
It’s also worth looking at how they present the firm – are they focussed on resolving disputes? Do they favour mediation? Or are they litigation lawyers?
4. Ask yourself: do they align with my goals/aims?
Ultimately, you’ll want to be working with someone that has your best interests at heart and aligns with your personal goals and aims. For example, if you’re most interested in resolving your matter through mediation, find a law firm that focusses on this.
5. Have your initial consultation.
Finally, ring book in your initial consultation. This initial consultation is a great chance to get to know the lawyer and make sure they’re a good fit for your matter.
At this initial consultation, a sign of a good lawyer is:
- They tell you what you NEED to hear not what you WANT to hear.
- They only give you the advice they can. If they don’t have enough information – they will tell you! If they need to research a question – they should say that!
- They will give you estimates of costs and timelines (as much as is possible) and are clear on the steps forward.
How we can help
If after the 5 above steps you feel confident, and the lawyer’s style is the right fit for you – you have succeeded in your quest to find a family lawyer!
At Amanda Little & Associates our Accredited Specialists and Senior Family Law Practitioners will guide you through this process with compassion and knowledge. Our specialised and knowledgeable lawyers will be able to identify each of the areas of family law that apply to you and work with you to achieve the best possible outcome for you.
Get in touch with our friendly team today on 1300 ALA LAW. We’ll be happy to discuss your unique situation with you in order to find the best outcome for you and your family.