Hiring a family law specialist gives you confidence for a more skilled lawyer.
There are many lawyers competing for your legal dollar. Their skill, experience and fees are all over the map. How do you choose? Price? Recent decisions in their favour? A positive review online? A referral from a trusted friend or advisor? While all of these are important, perhaps the most important is to hire a family law specialist.
What is a family law specialist? In Ontario, lawyers are regulated by the Law Society of Upper Canada (“LSUC”). The LSUC also runs the Certified Specialist program, which qualifies lawyers as specialists in their particular area of practice. The standards for acceptance are high. As such, the LSUC is confident in recommending specialists to handle complex matters.
Certification ensures that the lawyer you are hiring has a specified amount of experience, skill and knowledge commensurate with being called a specialist. Our conduct is expected to be above reproach. Certification requires time in practice and expertise in having handled challenging cases dealing with all aspects of family law. It also ensures ongoing and continuing education, as practitioners must re-qualify every year.
I am certified by the Law Society of Upper Canada as a family law specialist. I am proud to be a member of this esteemed group. I made the effort to obtain specialist accreditation as I believe that it is a means of distinguishing myself from the many other lawyers either practising, or dabbling in, family law.
As a specialist, I am well able to handle complicated family law matters. Multi-issue cases, sophisticated financial matters and complex custody cases are all within my expertise. I am able to dedicate the time and effort required to resolve difficult cases. My experience allows me to find and craft solutions where others might be stuck. But that does not mean that I am overqualified for straightforward cases – and not only because I consider very few family law cases to be “straightforward”. No family law case is exactly like another. Every case has its own particular facts. Each party has his or her own particular needs. Even if the parties are amicable, or there is just one issue to resolve, the case can benefit from my input and assistance. I can expedite the settlement, assist in drafting the agreement and apply for the divorce. I can distill the domestic contract down to its essential terms in order to produce a clear and accessible end-product.
The decisions you make in your family law matter will affect you and your children for the rest of your lives. Why wouldn’t you hire a specialist? Would you ask your GP to perform open heart surgery?