Becoming A Client

Choosing a family law attorney is a difficult decision — and an important one. Whether you have been referred to our firm by a lawyer you trust, or by one of our former clients, or by another professional, we will still need to determine whether our firm is in the position to best represent your interests. To effectively represent you, we must be able to work as a compatible team.

We want you to obtain the best lawyer for your particular situation, even if that lawyer is not us. In addition, we will never take a case if we are too busy with other matters to give your case the attention it deserves.

The Initial Consultation

Before meeting with us, an attorney, usually Mr. Seidel, will personally speak with you to obtain information and to initially determine whether our firm and your needs are a good fit. If we do decide to work together, a fee agreement (retainer agreement) must formalize our professional relationship and detail each of our obligations and expectations during the course of your case. The retainer agreement is also required by the Business and Professions Code in most situations.

We do not provide free consultations for a number of reasons. First, our time is limited. We want to devote as much of it as possible to assisting our existing clients. Further, usually the initial intake phone call serves the same function as a free consultation, which is why Mr. Seidel usually handles these calls. Finally, there is a strategic reason not to allow free consultations. Savvy litigants often meet with numerous attorneys, purposely creating a conflict of interest with the opposing party. If we have a meaningful conversation with one side of a dispute, we cannot represent the other party thereafter.

We do provide consultations for individuals who are genuinely in need of legal advice, but who do not necessarily want to retain us. For these individuals, we charge an hourly rate and provide meaningful advice on a limited-scope basis. We have ruefully observed the results of free consultations for clients who have come to us after receiving "free" advice elsewhere. It was not free advice; it cost the clients dearly.

To arrange a consultation with an experienced family law attorney, please contact us online or call 818-488-6423. We are here to help.