3 Questions To Ask Your Divorce Lawyer

Did you know that you can interview divorce lawyers? And that you should since they are working for you and not the other way around. Many people, myself included when I went through a divorce, think that they have to kiss a lawyers ass when they are in a pinch and looking for legal guidance. Nothing could be less true. Most lawyers are dying for work and you need to make them earn your money.

There are a few questions that you need to get locked down before you enter an agreement.

What is your hourly rate?

Make sure you know their hourly rate because that is a key factor in how much your divorce is going to cost. My lawyer kicked ass, and I knew what I was getting into when I locked her in at $325 an hour.

Also ask how granular they get with their billing. I was able to negotiate down to 6 minute increments, that way a quick phone call didn’t kill me (but $32.50 for a 6 minute call is still pricey). Make sure you aren’t getting dinged for 15-30 minutes every time they read an email. Review your monthly billing statement and ask questions.

Do I have to keep a balance on account with your firm?

You might have to drop some money on your lawyer to get them to start work. I think I started off by depositing $1500 into her account to get the ball rolling, then received monthly billing.

What arrangements that can be made for payment of your services?

After about a year, when we realized we weren’t going to settle, and a full trial was in order, I had to negotiate payment with my lawyer. I had a townhouse that I bought prior to getting married and we felt it was going to be a safe bet that I would retain that asset in my divorce. Either way, I was able to convince her to proceed with my case and that I would settle up once the dust cleared.

You can probably work out monthly payments. It’s recurring income for them, and they can get a court order to recover fees. These people look out for each other (Judges, trial lawyers).

Negotiate.