I would encourage you to find a lawyer who is less traditional. A non-traditional lawyer will encourage a different sort of approach than a traditional lawyer, and will rely heavily on alternative dispute resolution. Whereas traditional lawyers have a number of beliefs that are quite often incorrect, beliefs to avoid; and these beliefs don’t serve women with a legal problem in particular.
Firstly, a traditional lawyer believes that the lawyer should be in control.
A non-traditional lawyer is going to want you to have more say in your own manner because it is your life. This is your dispute, and it is your responsibility to decide what outcome you want and need.
Whereas a traditional lawyer often takes over the issue, and runs a strategy without fully discussing it with you, or discussing all the options with you. A traditional lawyer decides what’s best for you, based on their own views of your matter and based on precedents that they are following.
Sometimes, women find a lot of comfort in handing over a distressing part of their life to a lawyer to handle for them. Yet this sense of relief will be short-lived. It will lead to you ultimately feeling out of control, frustrated that things are taking so long, and dissatisfied with the outcome.
Another belief that a traditional lawyer has, which is generally a bad approach, is to cement you into a position.
During your first appointment with a more traditional lawyer, they will either set an expectation that you should get a certain percentage or that your rights need to be fought for in a particular way.
Research and dispute resolution theory has developed faster than legal training, and we know that position-based negotiations doesn’t allow for much fluidity or flexibility. Position-based negotiation also goes for longer, and doesn’t actually take into account all the options available, or what outcome you actually want.
A traditional lawyer, who likely bills on an hourly basis, also earns a lot more from you by cementing you into a position. If it’s going to take longer to resolve, then they are going to earn move!
The third mistaken belief that traditional lawyers hold is that they trust the Court system will give you a just outcome.
Unfortunately, our Court system doesn’t often result in justice. We’ve heard many, many, many stories where it costs a lot of time and money to get all the way to Court, and the outcome is bad for all parties.
Women, in particularly, don’t often fair well in the Court system, for many biased reasons that have developed over time in this system that was developed by men, for men.
There is a better way! And a non-traditional lawyer will help you explore all those options.
There’s plenty of ways to find a non-traditional lawyer, but Legally Wise Women is certainly a place that can help you find and hire the right lawyer for you and your matter.