It's always distressing when a relationship ends, and if you're planning to begin divorce proceedings, it's important to find a good divorce solicitor in order to ensure that the legal aspects of the process run as smoothly as possible. Here are some tips to help you when you're looking for a solicitor to handle your divorce.
1. Ask for Recommendations
Have any of your friends or members of your family recently become divorced? If so, and they live locally, it's worth asking them whether or not they would recommend using their divorce solicitor. Everyone's personal circumstances are different, and so there is no guarantee that your divorce will proceed in the same way in which your friend or family member's divorce did. However, if they were happy with the legal advice that they received, you could get peace of mind from using a solicitor recommended to you by someone whose opinion you trust.
2. Contact an Official Body
If you don't know anyone who can recommend a divorce solicitor, there are a number of official bodies that you can contact. "Resolution", formerly known as the Solicitors Family Law Association (SFLA), is an organisation of lawyers who believe in taking non-confrontational approaches to resolving family law matters. The organisation can help you to find a divorce lawyer and also lists lawyers specialising in mediation, collaborative law and areas such as domestic abuse or the financial side of divorce.
The Law Society, the body representing solicitors in England and Wales, also has a searchable database of solicitors which is accessible on its website.
3. Make an Initial Appointment
Once you have made a shortlist of divorce solicitors, take a look at their firms' websites. This should help to provide you with more information about each firm and give you a sense of whether or not divorce is one of its specialty areas.
When you have chosen the solicitor who you think you'd be most comfortable using, make an initial appointment with him or her.
Many firms of solicitors offer free initial interviews, so you can meet up with your potential divorce solicitor without worrying about the cost. You will be able to discuss your circumstances with the solicitor and he or she will be able to advise you about the different legal approaches that you could take in order to proceed with your divorce. Your solicitor will also be able to explain the potential costs involved and discuss possible payment options with you before you embark upon divorce proceedings.