Your domestic violence lawyer must make your safety and rights a priority. Protecting victims should be their top concern. Ask what specific steps they take to ensure your welfare. Do they have relationships with women’s shelters or advocacy programs? Make sure they are always accessible by phone or email if you have questions or concerns. The right lawyer for you will demonstrate a genuine commitment to defending and supporting victims of domestic abuse.
Compassion and understanding
In addition to legal knowledge, you want a domestic violence lawyer who grasps the emotional aspect of what you are enduring. Seek an attorney who is compassionate and understanding. Domestic abuse is complex and often dangerous. The lawyer needs to comprehend your unique situation fully. Make sure they listen carefully to your story rather than make assumptions. You need more than just legal counsel – be sure they offer emotional support too.
Experience taking cases to trial
Have they taken domestic abuse cases to trial previously? Success at trial often requires different skills than simply negotiating settlements. Make sure your lawyer can capably represent you in front of a judge and jury if necessary. Every victim of domestic violence has distinct needs and goals. Perhaps you want to file for divorce and seek sole child custody. Or you may want a restraining order and to press charges. Discuss your specific objectives with the lawyer at your consultation. Make sure the attorney constructs a legal strategy tailored to you. Beware lawyers pushing their agendas. You want one focused on your priorities.
When researching lawyers, look for ones with a solid reputation for successfully representing domestic violence victims. Online reviews are helpful. Check if the lawyer has received awards or recognition for their pro bono domestic violence work. Highly respected domestic violence lawyers will have a trail of satisfied clients and colleagues. Convenience is key when choosing a domestic violence attorney. You will need to meet with them frequently to discuss your case. Try to find a lawyer with an office located close to where you live or work. You likely want to avoid lengthy commutes. Choose a lawyer with an accessible office near you.
The good news is that some domestic violence attorneys provide payment plans or offer reduced rates. Some work with victims’ assistance programs that pay for services. Be upfront about your financial situation and ask about flexible payment options. Do not let the fear of fees deter you from hiring a lawyer. Discuss the cost during your consultation. Choosing the right domestic violence lawyer to represent you requires research and care. Set up consultations with lawyers on your shortlist. Take time to have an open discussion and gauge their knowledge, experience, and commitment. With an attorney well-matched to you and your objectives, you take steps forward toward safety and justice.