10 Questions to Ask a Family Court Lawyer Before Hiring

You and your partner have decided to file for divorce. It’s never the easiest thing to do especially if there are children stuck in the middle. You’re going to need a family court lawyer who will make the process easier, not more stressful.

Not every lawyer is made the same, however. You’ll need to ask each potential attorney a series of questions to pick out the best one for your particular case. There are many that you can ask but we’ve narrowed down the best ones.


Keep reading for a complete list of questions that you should ask each attorney that you talk to.

1. How Long Have You Practiced Law?

You want to make sure that whatever lawyer that you get is experienced enough to understand everything that is going into your case depending on how complicated that it is. Someone that’s new at it may not be able to grasp all the in and outs of your case due to lack of knowledge.

This doesn’t mean that you should all but rule out someone that hasn’t been out of law school for too long. They have to get their experience somehow. You may still be able to trust them with your case if it’s something simple.

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2. How Many Cases Like Mine Have You Taken Care Of?

Make sure that you are specific with this question. You don’t want to simply ask them how many family-related cases that they’ve taken. You want to know how many like yours they’ve taken.

They may have over a hundred family cases under their belt but only a handful of those fall into the category of your case. On top of this question, you should ask how many cases like yours they’ve represented in an actual trial.

3. What Are Your Usual Clients Like?

This may be a bit personal but it’s a good question to ask. It could help you gauge if they can help you with your case and if you can afford it.

For example, if their usual client is rich to middle-class people and you’re a single mom going back to school that may tell you to look elsewhere or to at least open up questions about payment plans.

4. How Long Does it Take You to Respond to Calls and Emails?

You need someone who is going to keep you up to date with information concerning your case. At the very least, your lawyer should be able to call you back when they miss your call or answer an email within 24 hours.

When you’re asking the lawyer about how long they take to answer you back you may also want to talk to them about their preferred contact method. Chances are that using it will get you a faster response.

5. Will Anyone Else be Working on My Case?

Depending on how complicated your case is, the attorney you’re talking to on the phone may not be the only one working on it. Sometimes they will bring on extra associates and paralegals. If things are really dicey then a personal investigator may get involved.

The reason why you want to ask about these individuals is that you want to make sure that they are experienced. You also want to find out how much adding them on will cost and if your attorney has dealt with them in the past.

6. How Do You Charge Clients and Can You Give Me an Estimate?

Hiring an attorney won’t be cheap on your wallet no matter where you go but you still want to know what price range you’ll be looking at. You don’t want to get slapped with a surprise fee for travel or court costs later.

You also want to know how they are going to charge you so you can pay your bill on time.

7. What is Your Approach

Every lawyer will have a different way of handling your case. Some lawyers are more aggressive than others. Some treat the case differently depending on if children are involved or not.

This question will be the best one to ask to find out if the attorney you’re talking to is the one for you. If you don’t agree with their approach then the case will be full of other disagreements as well.

8. Am I Being Unreasonable?

When you’re going through a custody case or divorce your emotions will be heightened. You may make decisions that are unreasonable and your lawyer will tell you this if you ask.

They can also tell you if the court will even entertain your demands. You may have to alter your goals a little.

9. What Are the Possible Outcomes for My Case?

When you sit down with your potential lawyer to talk about your case, chances are they already have a few ideas of what the outcome will be. Like with the question above this one will also sort of tell you if your goals are possible. You may need to change up a few things.

Beware of attorneys who will promise you everything that you want. Most reputable family lawyers will tell you like it is.

10. Do You Foresee Any Big Problems?

You would like for your case to go as smooth as possible but there are hiccups in about every case. Your lawyer should be comfortable with sharing these hangups with you during your consultation.

Again, if they are offering you everything you want or are painting too pretty of a picture, you should be skeptical.

Everything You Should Ask a Potential Family Court Lawyer

If you’re getting a divorce or are stuck in the middle of a custody case, you’re going to need the best person to represent you. The only way you’re going to be able to get the best family court lawyer is to ask the right questions.

Family matters can already be emotional. Don’t get a lawyer who is going to add even more stress on top of it.

Have you found yourself stuck in a lawsuit? Check our blog daily for tips for getting through it.

Comments 30

  1. Afton Jackson says:

    Hiring a child custody lawyer that has plans for the approach regarding the case will really help. Child custody issues are extremely complicated, so talking about what you’ll do beforehand will let you have a better idea of what might happen. If ever anyone in my family needs help with that, I’ll assist them in hiring a family lawyer for such a thing.

  2. Zachary Tomlinson says:

    You made an excellent point about consulting an experienced lawyer for your family-related legal issues. I like the idea of having someone who has dealt with similar cases to achieve my ideal resolution. I will consider these tips and seek out a legal expert if something similar happens to my marriage.

  3. Eli Richardson says:

    I spoke with my brother a few days ago, and he sounded very upset about his marriage issues, and just now, he called me to say that it’s all over. I think that my brother will need to find and hire a lawyer since they both paid for their house and other assets, so I’ll email your hiring tips to him right away. Thank you for the advice on asking about a lawyer’s past cases to make sure that they’re related to yours.

  4. Afton Jackson says:

    Asking a family lawyer to review the case and prepare for problems beforehand might be the best way to set your expectations. Child custody cases and other similar proceedings are very delicate, and I really want to figure out a way for my family members to get the help they need during such a time. If I can find a family lawyer in the area, I’ll help them coordinate with my relatives for sure.

  5. Alice Carroll says:

    You made a good point that a good family law attorney could have the foresight to anticipate the possible outcomes in a case. I’m interested in looking for a family law attorney soon because I’m planning to adopt a child with my husband. It will be important to properly navigate the laws involved with that.

  6. Braden Bills says:

    My friend has been considering getting a divorce, but he’s not sure what to do about it. It makes sense that he might want to get a lawyer to help out with that. That seems like a good way to ensure that he organizes everything properly.

  7. Rachel Frampton says:

    I would like to hire a family lawyer that will be able to help obtain my son’s custody from his abusive father. Well, in this case, I would keep in mind to compare the fees first. Aside from this, you made a pretty good point that it will be wiser to seek help from a private investigator.

  8. Levi Armstrong says:

    I like that you said I should choose a divorce lawyer that could get back to me through phone call or email within a day. My dad is divorcing his second wife because she mistreated my sister. I’ll share this article with Papa later, so he would use this as a guide. Thanks.

  9. Shaylee Packer says:

    As you mentioned, it is a good idea to ask the family lawyer how long they have practiced law, and if they have any experience in cases like yours. My brother is going through a divorce right now, and wants to make sure he gets the representation he needs. I will have to share this article with him, and see if it helps him find the right lawyer for him.

  10. Rebecca Gardner says:

    I like your suggestion to ask about any potential hangups to make sure the lawyer’s comfortable being open with us. My sister has decided to divorce her husband of two years since they’ve realized how different their long-term goals are. I’m glad I read your article so I can pass along your advice and help her find the perfect law firm to work with during this emotional time.

  11. Ellie Davis says:

    It’s interesting to know that a family lawyer can help you to ask about a family lawyer’s usual clients will help you to decide if they can help you with your case. My sister is thinking about getting divorced, and we are looking for advice. I will let him know about your recommendations to help her choose the right lawyer to help us.

  12. Thomas Clarence says:

    You made a great point when you explained that it is important to know how many cases an attorney has represented that are similar to your case. If I were to guess, I would imagine that it would be important to find a lawyer that is familiar with child support and custody when children are involved in a divorce. That way it can be ensured that the children will be considered during the proceedings of a divorce.

  13. AJK Legal says:

    Thanks for your valuable resources keep sharing the information like this…

  14. Adam Smith says:

    It is important to hire a family lawyer who is reliable and who will help you throughout the legal process when you think about separation or filing for divorce. Such family lawyers can help you with any family related legal issues.

  15. Shaylee Packer says:

    As you mentioned, it is a good idea to find out how many cases like yours the lawyer has taken care of. In doing this, you can make sure that it will be as smooth of process as possible. I will have to keep these tips in mind if I ever find myself needing them in the future.

  16. Zoe Campos says:

    Thank you for reminding me that lawyers will always be different from one another and each professional will have a different way of handling our case. My mother had been assaulted inside her house last week and although she only had mild injuries, we’re determined to file a case against our neighbor. It might be better to hire a lawyer first and talk about what will be included in the legal brief printing later.

  17. Alicia Byrne says:

    I didn’t realize that a person going through a divorce might make unreasonable requests because of heightened emotions. My friend recently wanted to file for a divorce with her husband because she found him cheating on her while she was pregnant with their child. I cannot imagine the heartbreak she is going through now and they will have to fight for the custody of the baby too. I will definitely remind her to ask this question when she wants to hire a lawyer for her divorce.

  18. Jesse Ford says:

    I like how you mentioned that you should ask a potential attorney how many similar family law cases to yours have they worked on. My sister is thinking of looking for a mediate family law firm because she’s considering getting a divorce from her spouse for mutual differences. I think it’s a good idea for my sister to consider all of her options when hiring a reputable professional to help her mediate the property distribution process if she decides to get a divorce.

  19. Taylor Swift says:

    First and the most important thing to consider before hiring a divorce lawyer is their past experience in managing and more importantly winning divorce related cases, a good, proficient and experienced divorce lawyer will have a much better idea with respect to the judge’s and jury’s expectation and this aspect will prove to be an essential help for you and your case. Secondly, you must look for client testimonials, this will help you in understanding the past clients experiences with the lawyer. Lastly, and most importantly before you proceed forward with the first appointment make sure you are well aware of their consultation fees.

  20. Dillain Swain says:

    For a divorce we must be prepared with the proper questions. The points mentioned here in this article can help us settle divorce matters. Thanks for sharing.

  21. Taylor Anderson says:

    My cousin is fighting for custody of his son with his wife. Because of this, he needs to hire a family lawyer to help him. I like how you mentioned that a lawyer will help him know what problems will be the hardest to overcome. Thanks for pointing out the benefits of hiring a family lawyer.

  22. Victoria Addington says:

    My wife and I have agreed to file a divorce. After our five-year relationship, we’ve decided to end it. With that, I am hoping to find a family law firm that can give me the best lawyer for my case. I shall then follow your tip on asking questions about their previous clients to get a good grasp of how they represent their clients.

  23. Charlotte Fleet says:

    I like that you explain that you should know about who will be working on your case and to make sure that everyone in your case is experienced. My husband’s sister has been struggling with her husband for a while. I think she should look into hiring a professional with experience in family law that can help her figure out what is best for her and her kids.

  24. Rebecca Gardner says:

    Thanks for the tip to look for a lawyer who tells it like it is instead of promising that we’ll get everything we want. One of my close friends asked for my help choosing a divorce lawyer because she’s feeling really emotional about her husband’s infidelity. I’m glad I read your article so I can help her identify a good family law firm to work with!

  25. Tyson Coolidge says:

    I like what you said about finding a lawyer with an approach that you agree with. My sister has been telling me about how she needs a lawyer for her custody hearing soon. I’ll share this information with her so that she can find the right one for her.

  26. Jonathan says:

    We usually visit a family lawyer to get a quick resolution. Because, beside money any cases revolving family directly affects our mental health and everyone in the family, even if they are not directly connected with the case. Thus, enquiring about the lawyers experience and the types of cases he/she handled is very crucial. You have correctly mentioned that we should enquire about the types of cases handled by the concerned person to get a better idea.

  27. Oscar Morrison says:

    I appreciate the idea of asking lawyers when I’m first meeting with them what they expect would happen with the case and how the court will likely see it. My wife and I might be getting divorced, and one point I know we’d fight over is our son. Making sure I approach it with reasonable expectations would be helpful.

  28. Ellie Davis says:

    I liked that you mentioned you need to make sure to hire a family lawyer that has enough experience. My sister is getting divorced, and we are looking for advice to choose the right lawyer to help her. I will let her know about the benefits of hiring an experienced family lawyer to help her during her divorce process.

  29. Dylan Peterson says:

    I like what you said about asking an attorney how they will handle your case so that you can find the one that’s the best fit for you. My sister has been telling me about how she wants to divorce her husband soon, and she wants to make sure that she gets custody over the kids. I’ll share this information with her so that she can find the right family lawyer to help her with this.

  30. Derek McDoogle says:

    I like how you said that you need someone who is going to keep you up to date with information concerning your case. My cousin is fighting his child’s custody with his ex-wife and he does not know how to talk to her to come down to an agreement. I will suggest to him to read this article so that he can be aware of the benefits of hiring a family lawyer.

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