Few lawyers are in as much demand as the family law attorney. Across the country, divorce rates are as high as they have ever been, meaning many are seeking out the representation of counsel to handle their proceedings. Some states have begun changing the laws to make it easier for people to handle their own divorces, but this simply does not work when there are complicated issues involved or a great deal of money at stake. For those who do not understand exactly what it is that a family law attorney does, here are some of the aspects of the job.
It is important to understand that a family law attorney is not restricted by matters of divorce, even if that is what they are most closely associated with. They are specialists in all matters of legal issues involving families. Divorce happens to be a big part of that, and child custody battles are usually running a close second (not to mention that child custody is usually a natural follower of a divorce proceeding). They are also involved in other legal matters, including paternity disputes, annulments, adoption, and prenuptial agreements.
If you are not sure whether or not you need to hire a family law attorney, look at the situation you are in. If you are about to enter into a divorce and you are not confident of your legal footing, you should definitely contact a lawyer who can guide you through the process and fight for your rights. It might even be worth contacting a lawyer before you tell your spouse that you want a divorce. This can help you avoid pitfalls that sometimes come along with letting one half of the partnership take control of how the divorce goes. However, as noted, divorce is only one reason why you might need representation. Anytime something involves a family affair and you are not sure how to proceed legally, you should seek the advice of counsel.
Of course, knowing you need to hire a lawyer and knowing where you can find one are two different things. Obviously you can throw a dart in the middle of any city and probably manage to hit someone who can represent you, but there are better ways to find good counsel. If you can find someone through the advice of friends or acquaintances, that is usually best. These people will tell you directly whether or not they had a good experience with their family law attorney. Second to that, you can always contact the state bar association and use their referral service.