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Attorneys Vic Hill and Brad MacDonald

3 reasons to fire your attorney before you finalize your divorce

Divorce is a long and stressful legal process whose outcome depends on your understanding of the law and on precedent or rulings in previous divorces with similar circumstances.


You probably already realize that trying to go through a high-asset divorce without a lawyer could put you at a disadvantage. Unfortunately, not all legal representation is of the same caliber. You may realize now that you have filed for divorce that your lawyer simply is not doing their job. What are some common reasons that you might have to fire your lawyer and hire a new one?

  1. They don’t technically practice family law

Perhaps you’ve already worked with this lawyer before because of an intellectual property issue that you had years ago. You trust them and have a good relationship with them, so it only made sense to go to them for your divorce.

Although they told you they did not handle divorces, they agreed to help you with your case. While that may have been kind, they aren’t in a position to give you the best representation possible. If they don’t have much experience with divorce or with divorces involving significant assets and complex property, they may not be able to help you get the best outcome.

  1. They don’t seem to have time to properly manage your case

Some attorneys take far more cases than they should. They juggle multiple clients at one time and don’t fully invest in any of them. If your attorney takes hours to respond to a simple phone call or email, if they have failed to show up for hearings or meetings or if they can’t seem to remember the details of your case or your name, it may be time to partner with the lawyer who will prioritize success in your case.

  1. They have a conflict of interest that could affect you

When you hired your lawyer, maybe you picked them because someone you knew used them. However, it’s possible that the attorney might have a connection to your ex, their employer or one of their close friends or family members.

If there is a conflict of interest that might make your attorney more sympathetic to your ex than they are to you, you will likely protect yourself by having someone else represent you instead of someone with ties to your ex. You want an attorney who will advocate for you and the outcome that will help you have the best possible life after divorce. They should not worry about the implications for your ex.

Switching lawyers early in divorce or even mid-divorce might mean incurring a little bit of extra expense right now. However, it is almost always better to get the results you want initially in the family courts, rather than needing to go back and change things after you divorce.