Divorce is one of the most difficult, and consequential, life transitions that anyone can go through. Whether your divorce was expected or took you by surprise, and regardless of what the relationship between you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse is like (contentious, amicable, or somewhere in between), it’s likely going to be tough to make all the decisions that you will need to make in order to navigate the coming process and move forward with your life.
One of the big decisions you’ll need to make soon is about legal representation - what law firm or attorney you will choose to lead you through divorce. Finding good representation is extremely important, because the lawyer you have on your side will affect the outcome, and the outcome of your divorce will affect various aspects of your life (your finances, your family relationships, your responsibilities, etc.) for years to come.
However, finding a lawyer can be challenging, especially in a state as large as Colorado, where there are thousands of firms. Here are a few qualities that you should look for when comparing different options - some of these qualities can be ascertained online or by a phone call, and some will require you to meet with the attorney(s) in person before officially retaining them!
This is probably the easiest quality to look for; it is also probably the least critical on this list, because with the convenience of digital technology, many lawyers are truly able to offer great service to clients who are located anywhere in the state. However, if they need to physically represent you in a court hearing, they should be located close to your county. Even if they need to represent you in a hearing via Zoom, it’s to your advantage that they know the judge or are familiar with the court system in your county, as they may have knowledge, connections, and resources that can benefit you!
Experience is also an easy quality to look for, but it is probably one of, if not the most important quality in a divorce lawyer/law firm. The more experience that your lawyer has, the better prepared they will be to handle your case. A lawyer who has been practicing for a decade or longer, for example, will be extremely familiar with the ins and outs of the divorce process in Colorado and will have encountered a variety of challenging or complex situations. They will know how to avoid mistakes and how to help you consider your options.
Divorce can be highly emotional. You may be feeling sad, scared, and stressed. You may be dealing with a really tricky custody dispute, or with a spouse who refuses to cooperate. There’s a lot that’s on your plate and a ton of unknowns about the future, which is why you need to work with a divorce lawyer who is - among many things - kind, understanding, empathetic, warm, friendly, and who truly cares about you. They need to treat you with respect and sympathy in all of their interactions and communications so you can build trust and good rapport. The more you feel comfortable with them, the better your overall divorce experience will be.
Just because divorce starts doesn’t mean that the rest of your life stops - the demands of your career and the schedule of your kids’ extracurriculars, as well as many other commitments, keep going as usual. You may be even busier if you and your spouse are dividing up parental responsibilities or no longer living in the same place. In the whirlwind, it’s easy for information to get lost in the shuffle, so choose a lawyer who communicates well and frequently in order for you to stay in the loop!
Many divorce lawyers start the process by telling you what they can do for you and then asking you to follow them to that outcome, but that’s not necessarily the kind of lawyer you want to work with, because that outcome may not be what you actually want. You may not even know what you want at first. You need a lawyer who will first take the time to listen to you and get to know you - they need to be a good listener, ask the right questions, and then honor your wishes as much as it is possible to do so.
When we talk about qualities to search for in a lawyer, these qualities are often magnified with a group of divorce lawyers who can work together to bring more experience to your case, a more diverse background, creativity, more sympathetic ears, and more people who care about you and your family. A team working with you is typically more advantageous because you get more perspectives and more help!
Divorce representation is expensive, because it is an investment into your future. However, divorce can be unpredictable; if unforeseen issues arise, it can take many more months or even years to resolve in some situations. If your lawyer bills by the hour, there is no telling how pricey the final cost will end up being. If you can, it’s better to work with attorneys who charge a flat fee, have other package options, or who charge predictable monthly fees; this can cut down on your financial worries.
Why Choose New Leaf Family To Guide You Through Divorce?
At New Leaf Family, we have these qualities and more on our Colorado divorce lawyer team! We are focused on empowering you to achieve your goals, to grow through the process, and to ultimately lay the best foundation for yourself and your children. We have multiple offices in the state of Colorado to better serve our clients, including in Golden, Arvada, Aurora, and Centennial. Collectively, we have more than 30 years of experience. We have lawyers who have been through divorce and custody battles themselves, so we can relate to what you are going through.
One of the unique things about our law firm is that we take the time to engage you in a discovering process about what you want; we don’t act until we have listened and clarified your ideal outcome, and then we base everything we do for you off of that desired end! We offer monthly flat fees rather than charging by billable hours. Call us today to request a consultation, get more of your questions answered, and find out if we are the right divorce lawyers for you!