When it comes to small-town values with a big city feel, Greenville, S.C. delivers. The downtown shopping district offers boutiques, eateries, and outdoor entertainment.
The scenic waterfalls cascade into Falls Park with the Swamp Rabbit Trail and Children’s Garden available for family outings. But what happens when the water runs dry and the marriage ends?
How can you find a great Greenville divorce lawyer while trying to stay afloat?
No need to fret. We’ve got the tips to help you find the best divorce attorney in town.
What is a Divorce Lawyer
A divorce attorney specializes in family law, and has experience in issues of divorce, child custody and visitation, child support, and spousal support.
It’s not mandatory to get legal representation to complete the divorce process, but due to complex matters and documentation necessary to complete a divorce, you should have someone represent you.
Things to Look For in a Divorce Lawyer
A good divorce lawyer will meet certain criteria. Some key characteristics of a divorce lawyer include:
- Experience in the four common issues of a divorce
- 5-10+ years of experience practicing in family law
- Client testimonials
- Free consultations
While the branch of family law encompasses many different areas, there are four common issues to resolve in a divorce. These issues are:
- Child Support
- Child Custody
- Separation of net worth
Alimony is spousal support paid to the other spouse at the end of a marriage. Factors involved in the allocation and distribution of alimony depends on the state, length of the marriage, age of the partners, individual net worth, and more.
Child custody involves the decision of how much time a child will live with a parent and which parent makes choices about education, medical care, and religious upbringing.
The types of custody awarded are temporary, exclusive/sole, and joint. Temporary custody goes to a person during the separation or divorce process. Exclusive or sole custody gets awarded to one parent. The parent controls all factors of the child’s life. Supervised visits or visitation privileges get awarded by the judge.
Joint Custody splits the time the child lives with each parent by a percentage. Many times the child lives with each parent 50% of the time.
But visitation rights and custody get complicated if a couple has multiple children and one parent is unsuitable.
Child Support won’t be an issue for every married couple if both parents are financially stable. But if one parent gets awarded sole custody it may be a problem.
Child support is the financial help given by the noncustodial parent to the custodian for the sake of the child’s needs.
Separation of Net Worth
Couples gain assets during the length of a marriage. If a marriage lasts for several years they could own more than one real estate property, cars, and bank accounts. Deciding who gets to take what adds pressure to a divorce.
It’s important your attorney can handle the issue of separating the money and personal belongings in a manner which pleases both sides.
Experience in Practicing Family Law
While you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, there are good reasons for choosing a seasoned divorce attorney over a newer one.
Experienced attorneys anticipate issues that come up during a divorce. They understand the demands of handling an emotionally strained client whose major chapter of life is ending.
They also understand the specific family laws in South Carolina or your state, how they may impact your case, and can navigate the system.
The attorney should have successful case results and trial history. They will be happy to share this information and answer your questions.
Experienced attorneys have testimonials from satisfied clients. Testimonials show clients received good service and want to remain on good terms with their attorney in case of future litigation needs.
Most law firms offer a divorce lawyer free consultation as a courtesy for potential clients. A free consultation allows both the attorney and client to see if this professional relationship is a good fit.
The client and lawyer both ask questions such as how much does a divorce lawyer cost, who handles my case, will the divorce get contested, and so on.
The attorney can review the divorce process, what happens after you hire the attorney and other important information.
How to Find a Greenville Divorce Lawyer
Searching for a divorce lawyer in Greenville, S.C. is no different than looking in another state or county. But finding the best attorney takes some time. While many will claim to be the best, this isn’t always the case.
Use the three R’s to find the right professional to manage your divorce.
Research the Internet
This tip sounds like a no brainer, but searching online is a fantastic way to look for a divorce attorney. The internet allows you to uncover information on any divorce lawyer in your area. If the attorney won any high profile cases, it’ll get publicized.
With that said, publicity isn’t what you need from a good divorce attorney. You want someone who matches your personality and will work with you. You need to trust your attorney, so creating a list of potential candidates through an online search is a good option.
Referrals from Family and Friends
It’s no surprise that our country has some of the highest divorce rates in the world. When faced with the task of finding a divorce lawyer speaking with family, friends, or a trusted colleague can lead you in the right direction.
Referrals from someone you know is like reading a testimonial, only better. If the person gives the attorney a negative review, pry deeper to find out more. Your cousin or sister may not like a certain attorney due to an issue the attorney could not control.
Remember that an attorney worth hiring will have more positive reviews than negative ones, so be discerning when deciding on who represents you.
Read an attorney’s online reviews. A lawyer’s reviews give a glimpse into someone else’s experience. While referrals and testimonials are good, a review left online is worth a read.
Most consumers read a business’ review before deciding to buy an item or service. The same is true for hiring an attorney.
Although every case is different, if you notice a pattern in the reviews, it may be a good indicator to steer clear.
Make Your Choice
As you can see, finding the best Greenville divorce lawyer isn’t difficult once you know what you need.
If you live in the Greenville, S.C. area and want a dedicated and experienced attorney, the Elliott Frazier Law Firm provides the help you need.
Contact us today for your case review.
Angela Elliot Frazier is a Family Law Attorney who practices in Greenville, SC. She graduated from the University of South Carolina School of Law, and has been practicing law for 14 years now. Angela Frazier believes in helping you through one of the most stressful times of your life. Learn more about her experience by clicking here.