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How to choose a divorce attorney
by Honorable Marie Rady, Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court, Division of Domestic Relations
As a Magistrate and a former family law practitioner, I would give the following advice if asked how to choose the right divorce attorney.

Most important is the attorney’s experience in family law. All other things being equal, an attorney who has practiced family law for ten years is better at dealing with family law issues than a first year attorney or one whose practice is not concentrated in family law. Family law is a specialized field which requires specialized knowledge.

The second factor is the attorney’s approach to family law in general. You want someone who is not only schooled in alternative dispute resolution, but whose prefers these alternatives to litigation. Look for a history of engaging clients in an alternative approach.

Related to this “approach” factor is the attorney’s view towards your case. Consider it a red-flag if the attorney you are interviewing is “yes-man” or promises to get you everything you want. Your attorney should be fleshing out your interests are (not wanting your children to switch schools right now) versus your positions (wanting the house).

All of the attorneys to whom I have referred cases to over the years before going on the bench are members of the Center for Principled Family Advocacy. The Center provides a listing of family law attorneys trained and committed to alternative dispute resolution. You can click on the following link to see a current list of Attorney members of the Center for Principled Family Advocacy


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