Finding a good child custody attorney is difficult, especially because of the many emotional issues that arise during child custody proceedings. If you’re looking to hire a child custody attorney, use the following resources and tips to identify experienced child custody attorneys.
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The best resource for those who are seeking information on a good child custody lawyer is to seek references from other people. Important references that can help you find the right child custody lawyer include:
- Seeking referrals and reviews from friends and family members;
- Seeking recommendations from court clerks at the court office;
- Inquiring from other parents, including strangers, who currently have child custody cases at the child support office; and
- The state bar association can also pass on referrals. Depending on where you live, some courts may maintain a network of custody attorneys.
It’s essential for single parents to interview custody lawyers before hiring them. When interviewing a potential child custody attorney, ask questions on:
- Personality and style. As a single parent, you must ensure that an attorney’s personality and style match your own. Their personality and style don’t have to be exactly the same as yours, but you should find an attorney who is approachable because there will be many questions along the way.
- Fee structure. Further, inquire whether the potential child custody attorney charges hourly rates or on the basis of a retainer.
- Free initial consultation. As a single parent, you want to know whether a child custody attorney offers a free initial consultation. A no-cost initial consultation will give you an idea of whether you can work with the attorney.
If you can’t afford to hire a child custody lawyer, you may qualify for a court-appointed attorney. A court-appointed family law lawyer will represent you the same way as a paid attorney.
The county family law court maintains a network of pro bono lawyers to assist with child custody cases.
Also, there are other resources that a parent can use to check a child custody attorney’s reputation, these include:
- Checking the lawyer directory in your state. The attorney directory enables you to know if a child custody lawyer is in good standing with the state bar. And if their attorney’s license has been suspended and if so, the reasons for suspension status. Most states require lawyers to reveal this information to a potential client.
- Asking around town. If you live in a smaller community, there’s a good chance that a child custody attorney’s reputation will be well known in the community. Single parents can ask someone else or multiple people in the community about a potential child custody lawyer.
Ultimately, finding the “right child custody lawyer” for your child custody case is relatively subjective. However, there are many review sites out there that can help you to determine if a potential child lawyer would be right for you where attorneys and clients have left feedback. One of the best places to look for reviews on child custody attorneys is on Avvo.
While searching for top-rated family law attorneys to represent you in your child custody proceeding, don’t worry about making a mistake. Thus, if the agreement between you and your child custody attorney is ineffective or if the attorney doesn’t meet your needs, you can release the child custody lawyer from his or her duties and begin a new search for a new child custody attorney.
How Can I Find the Right Child Custody Attorney in Greenville, South Carolina?
The best match for one person’s circumstances and personality might not be perfect for another. Although there’s no universal roadmap to finding the right child custody lawyer, considering the following qualities in your search can help you find the best child custody lawyer:
- Experience With Similar Child Custody Cases
If you’re looking for the best child custody lawyer to help you with your case, having experience in similar cases is an essential component you must consider. Look for a child custody attorney with skills in the areas your custody case requires. A single parent should choose a child custody attorney who has extensive experience handling and winning similar cases. Also, you should understand how many hours it might take for your custody case to be decided. Asking yourself these questions can help you find the right attorney:
- Is my child custody case going to be high conflict and complex?
- Does my child have special needs?
- Are there any interstate elements that I should consider?
Whatever the answers to these questions are, make sure whoever you hire is prepared to handle them.
- Specialization in Custody Cases
Just like experience, specialization is something you must consider when trying to find the right child custody lawyer to represent you. All child custody attorneys practice family law, but not all family law lawyers specialize in child custody. Many attorneys are well-versed in multiple areas, but if an attorney focuses more on high-asset divorces, he or she might not be the right choice when finding a child custody lawyer. So, do your homework and ensure the potential family law attorney’s skill set matches your specific needs.
- Knowledge of Jurisdiction Laws
Child custody laws and regulations vary significantly from state to state. The right child custody lawyer for your child custody situation is one with a thorough understanding of the rules of the state you live in. Or at least one with an in-depth knowledge of the laws and regulations of the state or county where the case will be handled—they’re not always the same. Thus, in South Carolina, it makes sense to hire a child custody attorney who knows the ins and outs of South Carolina law and how to aim for a favorable outcome.
- Choose a Local Child Custody Lawyer
Besides knowing the child custody laws, a local attorney may be the best child custody attorney for your child custody case. Accessibility is key. A local child custody lawyer is not only readily available to answer questions but also allows for simple logistics. It’s much easier to meet with a local lawyer without having to take an entire day off work or travel a great distance.
Further, local representation also makes a lawyer easier to vet—perhaps a friend or family member can refer you or the regional bar association has recommendations. Child custody lawyers operating in a specific geographical area may have established strong relationships with family court judges and courthouse staff, which can prove beneficial.
- Ability to Communicate Effectively With all Parties Involved
Your attorney is someone you have to communicate with. Also, they’ll need to communicate on your behalf with the opposing party, other lawyers, judges, and your spouse. They may have to communicate with people that work outside of family law, including accountants. Thus, being able to communicate effectively is essential.
Further, whoever you hire is a person you’ll need to spend time with and work with. Thus, being comfortable with them, confident with their expertise, and being able to share what you need with them, is crucial. During a child custody battle, you’ll probably experience a lot of conflict, so avoiding disputes with your lawyer makes everyone’s life easier.
- Consider Your Financial Situation
Hiring an experienced custody lawyer is expensive. Thus, it’s essential you consider your financial resources, what you can and can’t spend. This can help you in determining the best child custody lawyer for you. Knowing up front how a child custody lawyer handles billing can help you manage your expenses and have a realistic expectation of the cost.
Divorce and family law cases involving children and guardianship are intense and emotional issues. The right child custody lawyer may be one who knows this and understands what’s at stake for you and your family. You don’t need someone to hold your hand every step of the legal process because you can always hire a family therapist or lean on family and friends for emotional support. However, it’s essential you find an attorney you can work with on a practical level towards achieving a favorable child custody arrangement.
Finding an experienced custody lawyer for your child custody disputes is one of the most crucial decisions you may ever make. It can have a significant impact on your healing, and it can affect your life. Thus, it’s vital to put in the time and effort to make sure your child custody attorney is the right fit for you, your children, and your situation.
Do You Need the Best Child Custody Attorney in Greenville, South Carolina?
If you’re going through a child custody battle in Greenville, then you need legal representation from an experienced family lawyer who is familiar with South Carolina child custody laws. Greenville Family Attorneys is one of the best child custody law firms in South Carolina. Contact our family law firm today at (864) 475-9393 or chat with us online to schedule a free initial consultation. We’ll ask you about your situation to identify your legal issues, and we’ll answer all your questions.
Also, our experienced Greenville divorce attorneys will explain the child custody process to you, and talk about the optimal outcome for your child custody case. Our network of attorneys will guide you through every step of this emotional journey and represent your best interests, and we’ll also be there for emotional support. Even though everything seems amicable and uncontested, don’t go it alone. Our reputable custody lawyers will make sure you don’t make any mistakes that you could regret later. Don’t wait! Call us today!