How to Choose a Child Custody Lawyer in Missouri
Whether your divorce proceedings have just begun or you’re renegotiating custody agreements, hiring a child custody lawyer in Park Hills, MO is in your best interest. Not only are they familiar with the ins and outs of custody law, but it’s especially important if you and your ex are having a difficult time remaining civil.
Choosing your child custody lawyer can be a bit overwhelming, especially if you’ve never hired an attorney before. Here’s how to find and vet a lawyer when you need one.
Finding child custody attorneys
One of the best ways to find an attorney—or find out whom to avoid—is by word of mouth. If you have any friends or family members in Park Hills, MO with relevant experience in child custody cases, ask them for lawyer advice. Were they happy? Did they feel like their concerns were acknowledged and communication was transparent? Finding out from a trusted source can provide more insight than reviews and websites alone.
If you don’t know anyone who has worked with a child custody attorney before, call the Missouri State Bar Association for a referral. They’ll help connect you with attorneys in that specific practice area.
Finally, internet searches can help. Look for attorneys in your area, verify that they handle custody cases and then look for reviews. Websites like Google and Yelp can be helpful—look for an overall pattern rather than focusing on a few suspiciously glowing or angry reviews. Collect a few names that look promising, then give their office a call.
What to ask a potential child custody attorney
Interviewing a child custody attorney will help you determine whether you feel comfortable working with them. Most attorneys offer an initial consultation (which may or may not be free). You should take the opportunity to ask them questions about their experience as well as your specific case. For example, you might ask how long they’ve been practicing family law, whether they’ve handled similar cases to yours and what they expect the most likely outcome to be.
You could also ask if there’s anything you can or should be doing to help your case. Ask how they prefer to handle communication, when you should expect updates on your case and whether they’ll prepare you ahead of time for any in-court proceedings. Finally, make sure you understand their rates, payment options and what they estimate the total cost of the case may be.
Once you’ve talked to several attorneys, you should compare your impressions and notes. It’s crucial that you find an attorney whose approach and experience you trust. You will probably work with them for months at a time—and since their results will affect you for even longer, you want to make sure you work well together.
If you need the advice of a child custody lawyer in Park Hills, MO, reach out to the team at Maynard & Joyce, LLC. We’ll be happy to discuss our experience and approach when you call to arrange a consultation.