Family And Divorce Lawyer Job Description

Have you ever been dragged through a divorce? If so, you know how much it hurts and how much pain it causes. The good news is that there are people who deal with those things on a daily basis. While their jobs may vary, all of them try to do the same thing for their clients: make the process easier. Want to be a family and divorce lawyer and you need more information regarding Family And Divorce Lawyer Job Description, family lawyer qualifications, family lawyer salary, family lawyer job outlook, what is a family lawyer called & family lawyer skills

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what is a family lawyer called?

Family Law focuses on finding solutions to issues relating to often complex legal relationships. These include marriage and parenthood among others. For this reason, family law practice can involve work with varying groups from children to the elderly and any others in between. Because family law relates to some very personal aspects of a client’s life, it can be one of the most emotive areas of law to practice.

Divorce Lawyer Job Description

At degree level, family law often comprises an elective module in the final year of a student’s LLB degree. Modules can vary by university and may include a sociological look at the way society views family as well as a specific focus on the law’s practical application.

Family Law Topics

Family Law is incredibly diverse. This means that the topics studied at one institution are often different from those studied at another.

Most modules will feature some core topics (such as marriage, divorce and children) as well as others which will be more specifically linked to the professors’ areas of expertise.

Family Lawyer Job Description

Examples include:

  • Divorce, dissolution and financial separation
  • Children, parentage, residence, contact and parental responsibility. This may also include adoption, surrogacy, child abduction and even abuse/neglect
  • Children’s Rights (taking into consideration a child’s ability to make their own decisions)
  • Domestic Abuse
  • Domestic obligations towards families under International Treaties such as the ECHR
  • Socio-legal Family Law: a more general look at what society defines family as and whether the law has adequately responded to modern societal views. Examples include the law of parentage in the context of a rise in same-sex couples
  • Family law and the State. This includes the role of agencies and local authorities in childcare and protection

family lawyer job description

Forty to fifty percent of all marriages in the United States end in divorce. In 1969, California was the first state to legalize no-fault divorce. In 2010, New York was the last of the fifty states to approve it.  No-fault divorce does not require any evidence of wrong-doing on the part of either spouse. Although divorce is a difficult emotional decision, in terms of the law, it can easily be granted under a no-fault divorce ruling.

Divorce Lawyer - Definition, Examples, Cases, Processes

Divorce in the United States is in accordance with state law rather than governed extensively by federal regulations. A divorce lawyer specializes in civil law. This field can be saturated with emotions and life-changing decisions. Therefore, a divorce lawyer must delicately yet justly handle a wide variety of family law issues from divorce, marriage annulment, and legal separation to child custody, child support and visitation rights. They are also called divorce attorneys or family practice lawyers.

A divorce can take three to twelve months to finalize. However, it depends on how the divorce is filed. It may be a fault or no-fault divorce, contested or uncontested divorce or simplified divorce. The many legal issues to settle and the amount of conflict to mediate influence the time frame.

Do You Need a Divorce Lawyer? - FindLaw

Educational Requirements

There are no specific educational requirements for a divorce lawyer however, some courses are advised. Law school attendance and passing the bar examination is compulsory.  With an interest in divorce law, a law student may select courses in family law to help him specialize in child custody issues, family dysfunction and property rights. While pursuing a Juris Doctorate (J.D.), a law student can receive a certification in family law. In addition, certain law schools offer a Master of Law (LL.M) in Family Law which would follow the acquisition of a J.D..

Pick from the links below, depending on your education level that best describes your situation

family lawyer skills

When terminating a marriage, many legal aspects must be addressed. A divorce lawyer is responsible for the division of assets and debt among spouses. If there are children involved, a divorce lawyer helps set the terms for child custody and child support. Thorough research is required in order to gather supporting evidence in each case. Detailed paperwork must be compiled and then submitted to the court documenting the evidence.  For legal separations, a divorce lawyer carries out the separation through court orders.

Should I Hire a Texas Divorce Attorney? | Terry & Roberts

A divorce lawyer must excel in a few unique skills. They have to be an attentive listener because the decisions made in or out of court will greatly affect their client’s lives.  Although it may be difficult, it is vital a divorce lawyer remains non-judgmental to assist them in promoting their own client’s best interests. Their interpersonal skills must be strong because they are dealing with a variety of relationships in their profession. Advocacy, mediation and alternative dispute resolution skills should be acquired and mastered in law school as well as through continual work experience in the field.

The legal field in general requires exceptional communication skills, while working with families demands the capacity to connect with and relate to others on a very human level. Family lawyers thus need the following skills to be successful:

Analytical thinking

A major part of your job is looking at evidence and information to come to a conclusion that serves your client. Family lawyers use their analytical thinking skills to come up with solutions. Family cases can be quite complex and emotional, making it important to use your analytical thinking skills to figure out what’s best for everyone involved.

6 Benefits of Hiring a Female Divorce Lawyer - Mid State Law

Communication

When working as a family lawyer, you will use your communication skills every day. From writing important documents to speaking in court, your written and verbal communication skills are an important part of clearly conveying your ideas and arguments. Having strong communication skills can help you connect with clients and make a solid case for them.

Empathy

Whether a couple is dealing with a dramatic divorce or joyful adoption, emotions can be quite strong in family court. While family lawyers need to remain logical and follow legal procedures, it is also important for them to treat their clients with empathy. Having empathy skills means that you can understand how someone is feeling in a certain situation. While you aren’t a therapist, you may need to be a comforting presence when working in this career.

Family Lawyer Job Description | TotallyLegal

Negotiation

When it comes to any court case, there is a lot of negotiation involved. This is especially true when working with divorce or custody cases. Having strong negotiation skills is an important part of ensuring your clients get fair treatment in the courtroom. Many people involved in family court cases are in vulnerable situations, especially children, making it important that you can make a good case for your client’s needs.

Organization

Family lawyers work with a great deal of paperwork and important documents. Having organizational skills can help you keep everything in order. Along with being able to easily access your files, staying organized ensures that you are protecting the privacy of your clients. You are always sure that your confidential information is only going to authorized parties.

Research

While your client may provide you with useful information, you’ll need to use your research skills to fully understand the entire situation you are dealing with. Through research, you can find useful evidence and key testimonies. You may even use your research skills to conduct interviews with people involved in your case. Asking the right questions is an important part of finding the information you need to best serve your client.

Stress management

Although having empathy is an important part of serving your clients, you also need to have stress-management skills in order to separate yourself from overbearing situations. Family lawyers need to have the ability to balance their work life and home life to avoid burnout. Stress management is also an important skill to have in the courtroom. Even when situations get intense, you need to find ways to keep your composure and continue to serve your client.

Related: The Ultimate Guide To Work Life Balance

Time management

Court proceedings tend to be time-sensitive, meaning you’ll need skills that help you prioritize your work. By having time-management skills, you can meet important deadlines and submit all of your documentation on time. Keep in mind that when you are a family lawyer, things will come up all of the time. This means you need to be able to adjust your schedule accordingly.

family and divorce lawyer requirements

Practicing law in any capacity comes with specific licensure and academic expectations. If you want to become a family lawyer, then you need to follow these steps:

1. Earn a bachelor’s degree

Before law school, you need to earn your bachelor’s degree. While some four-year schools offer a pre-law program, there are other areas of study you can pursue during your undergrad. Students preparing for law school tend to major in criminal justice, psychology, sociology or government. The coursework you take can also prepare you for law school. Consider enrolling in courses that can help you improve your communication and public speaking skills.

During your undergrad, there are quite a few things you can do to prepare for law school. Along with taking relevant courses, you can use this time to build meaningful relationships with your academic advisors and professors. By having these connections, you can have a pool of qualified people to choose from when you need a letter of recommendation for your law school application.

2. Pass the LSAT

One major part of getting into law school is passing the Law School Admissions Test (LSAT). Most aspiring family lawyers take this exam toward the end of their undergraduate program. The questions in the LSAT are designed to test your logical and analytical thinking skills. You can prepare for the exam by taking study courses and practice exams.

Along with a favorable score on the LSAT, many law schools require you to submit letters of recommendation, a personal statement and your application payment. Having a high grade-point average (GPA) during your undergrad and a high score on your LSAT can improve your chances of getting into law school.

3. Complete law school

When looking for a law school to attend, make sure it is accredited y the American Bar Association (ABA). As you attend law school, you will work toward earning your Juris Doctor (JD). Many law school programs last about three years. During your first year, you’ll learn about all kinds of law topics. When progressing to your second and third years of school, you’ll have a chance to enroll in advanced-level courses. This is your chance to become knowledgeable about family law topics, such as divorce, adoption, custody, child welfare and marriage.

During your final year of law school, you will learn about taking the bar exam. This is a test that states administer to determine if you know enough about the law to become a licensed lawyer. Along with preparing for the bar exam, you can work on gaining relevant family law experience to make yourself a more hirable candidate after graduation. Many family law students participate in family law clinics and intern at family law firms.

4. Obtain a law license

Once you graduate from law school, it’s time to take your bar exam. Depending on your state’s rules, you may need to take a series of exams that may take a few days. Some of these exams will include multiple-choice questions, while others might involve essay questions. Once you pass your exams and submit everything to the state, you are officially a member of your state’s bar.

5. Accumulate continuing education credits

Even after you finish all of your schooling and licensure tests, you may need to earn continuing education credits throughout the course of your career in order to keep your license to practice law. These requirements vary by state. You can earn continuing education credits by attending conferences, seminars or lectures. You can also earn credit by completing an in-person or online course. When figuring out ways to continue your education, you will need to ensure your state approves of them.

6. Consider additional education

While earning an additional degree isn’t necessary for family lawyers, it is a great way to pursue even more career opportunities. You may find that by earning your master of laws degree, you are a more hirable candidate for high-level family law positions. Some of these programs allow you to specialize in family law, allowing you to expand your knowledge of the field.

family and divorce lawyer salary

A divorce lawyer’s yearly salary can range, on average, from $48,000-$80,000. As a divorce lawyer builds their reputation in the field, the hourly rate they charges and therefore, salary is likely to increase.

Because the divorce rate is so high in the United States, a large percentage of clients frequently seek out divorce lawyers’ services. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in the next 8 years through 2020, it is estimated employment for lawyers will grow ten percent. This is in step with the national average for all occupations. However, expect competition to remain steady as more law students are graduating than there are job positions available. With high competition, lawyers must be willing to relocate and have a variety of work experiences on their resumes. Relocation to a different state means passing another state’s bar exam.

A Family Lawyer is a licensed attorney who manages legal problems between members of the same family. These may include divorce, adoption, guardianship, and emancipation cases. They are responsible for overseeing family estates, monitoring mediation sessions, and offering legal advice.

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Family Lawyer Job Description Template:

We are searching for a dedicated and qualified Family Lawyer to join our dynamic law practice. You will perform a range of duties including filing legal documents, attending court proceedings, participating in mediation sessions, and offering useful advice to clients.

To excel in this role, the successful candidate will be an exceptional communicator, with excellent negotiating and debating skills. All candidates will have a license to practice law, and the ability to successfully manage multiple clients.

Responsibilities:

  • Oversee and manage the legal issues that transpire between people that are members of the same family.
  • Supervise and direct mediation sessions, and offer effective legal advice.
  • Organize and record all official documents required to file cases.
  • Coordinate with staff to prepare an extensive brief on each case that goes to trial.
  • Uphold a steady schedule of hearings, court appearances, and conferences.
  • Respond to the urgent needs of clients.
  • Oversee family estates and wills.
  • Attend trials and court proceedings.
  • Regularly update clients about their cases.

Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Law.
  • A license to practice law from the State Bar Association.
  • A minimum of 3+ years’ experience in family law.
  • Outstanding interpersonal and communication skills.
  • Good organizational and multitasking abilities.
  • Must be skilled in negotiation, debate and persuasion techniques.

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