If you are considering divorce in New York, you need an experienced lawyer, not an amateur. Here are some reasons to avoid an inexperienced divorce attorney:
1. An Inexperienced Lawyer Could Cost You a Lot of Money
You might find that a newer lawyer’s prices are lower than more experienced attorneys. However, in the end, you will probably end up losing much more money than you would have assumed. If you have a lot of assets that you do not wish to lose, it is especially important to hire an expert. Whether you have a house, a retirement account, or several bank accounts, you should make sure to hire a lawyer who has successfully allowed clients to keep most of their assets. Otherwise, you could end up losing it all just because you are trying to save some money early on in the process.
2. A Short Case History Won’t Help You
Of course, most new lawyers have very little experience with clients, so they do not have a case history to show you. Before you hire a divorce lawyer, you will typically want to know how he or she has helped clients in the past, at which point you will get an overview of past cases. But clearly a new lawyer cannot show you much, particularly if you are the first client ever for that firm. In this way, you will be flying blind with a new lawyer, unsure of how the case will likely turn out, which can be stressful.
3. Lack of Office Staff Can Be a Disadvantage
Many new lawyers are still getting together their office staff. This means that until they get a front desk employee to make appointments and greet clients, they will be doing this job themselves. They may also be making copies, faxing documents, and ordering office supplies on their own. This leaves them with less time to devote to actual cases, so you cannot expect the same level of attention from a new lawyer that you would get one who has had a staff in place for years. An experienced lawyer’s office should run like a well-oiled machine, with everyone knowing their job duties, and this is unlikely in a newer firm.
These are just some of the disadvantages of hiring a newer lawyer with little experience. Some people may advise you to hire a recent law school graduate to save some money, but in the end, you will probably regret this decision. The only way hiring a new lawyer would be beneficial to you is if your case is quite simple, and you were considering representing yourself.
If so, hiring a recent grad is a step up from representing yourself, so if this is all you can afford, it is probably the best move. However, if you have any major assets, children, or even pets that you do not want to lose, you should focus on hiring an experienced New York divorce lawyer instead.