Expertise.com
2024

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Best Family Lawyers in Atlanta

Our Recommended Top 20

We did the research for you!

  • Licensing
  • User Reviews
  • Mystery Shopping Calls

Our goal is to connect people with the best local professionals. We scored Atlanta Family Lawyers on more than 25 variables across five categories, and analyzed the results to give you a hand-picked list of the best.

343

Reviewed

213

Curated

20

Top Picks

Learn about our selection process.

Providers

featured provider = Featured Provider

Website
124 S Main St Ste 1F, Jonesboro, GA 30236

Why choose this provider?

Lunn Law LLC, located in Jonesboro and Fayetteville, is a law firm that serves the Atlanta metro area. Sole practitioner Tiffany R. Lunn practices family law and domestic relations, assisting clients in difficult matters like divorce, alimony, annulment, child support and custody, visitation, and division of property. She also helps with prenuptial/postnuptial agreements and adoption. Lunn ensures her clients' safety by providing assistance with protection orders as well as contempt actions.

Attorney Information

Attorney NamesExperience
Tiffany Lunn - Principal19 yrs

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.6
Avvo
4.7 / 5 (15)
Google
4.9 / 5 (10)
Yelp
3.5 / 5 (3)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
4.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
5 Concourse Pkwy Ste 3000, Atlanta, GA 30328

Why choose this provider?

The Shaw Law Firm PC was founded in 1995 by principal Scott Shaw and serves the Atlanta metro area. The firm's primary area of practice stems around family law, especially concerning child custody and parental rights. The firm helps unwed fathers to prove paternity to have parental rights and is experienced in gathering information to strengthen the client's case for custody. The Shaw Law Firm has proven success in appellate courts dealing with international issues in family law cases.

Attorney Information

Attorney NamesExperience
Scott Shaw - Founder and Principal22 yrs

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.2
Google
4.1 / 5 (28)
Avvo
4.5 / 5 (20)
Yelp
2.5 / 5 (3)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
Whitlock Office Park 707 Whitlock Avenue Suite G4, Marietta, GA 30064

Why choose this provider?

Bivek, Brubaker & Prescott LLC is a family law firm in Marietta serving the Atlanta metro. It accepts divorce, child support, child custody, adoption, and other family law cases. The legal team has experience in complex matters, such as same-sex couples and military divorces. Its experience in collaborative law positions the firm to help clients settle out of court. The firm also fights for the best outcome in court when cases require litigation.

Attorney Information

Attorney NamesExperience
Melanie Brubaker - Founding Partner32 yrs
Damon Bivek - Founding Partner18 yrs
Suzanne Prescott - Founding Partner18 yrs

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.5
Google
4.6 / 5 (54)
Avvo
4.5 / 5 (46)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
201 Swanton Way, Decatur, GA 30030
  • Child Custody

Why choose this provider?

Gibbs Tillery Law Firm caters to Atlanta citizens facing legal family matters. Its attorneys deal with uncontested and uncontested divorce and assist clients in filing decree modifications. The team also helps couples establish cohabitation agreements and provides estate planning services to protect families' legacies. Jennifer Gibbs, the firm's managing partner since 2009, advocates for the rights of same-sex couples. She works alongside Richard Tillery, a trial attorney with experience litigating complicated trade secret and trademark infringement issues.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.4
Google
4.2 / 5 (19)
Avvo
4.4 / 5 (12)
Facebook
5.0 / 5 (11)

(+1 additional source)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
3348 Peachtree Rd NE Ste 700, Atlanta, GA 30326

Why choose this provider?

Terri Herron Law is an Atlanta family law firm with a primary focus on divorce cases. In representing her clients, Ms. Herron's goal is to help them reach fair and reasonable outcomes regarding issues such as child custody, child support, and alimony. Other child-related issues that the dedicated domestic/family lawyer in Atlanta handles include parental relocation matters and child legitimization. Ms. Herron's jurisprudence extends to addressing temporary protective orders when family violence is alleged.

Attorney Information

Attorney NamesExperience
Terri Herron - Principal16 yrs

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0
FindLaw
5.0 / 5 (94)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
75 14th St NE Ste 2840, Atlanta, GA 30309

Why choose this provider?

Richardson, Bloom, & Lines LLC is a family law firm based in Atlanta. The law office reviews child custody proceedings, helps in the division of property and investments, and mediates in the wake of divorce. Its attorneys also provide legal guidance to those seeking alimony so that they can receive what they deserve. Managing partner Melody Richardson is a member of the Fellow of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers.

Attorney Information

Attorney NamesExperience
Melody Richardson - Managing Member39 yrs

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.4
Google
4.4 / 5 (7)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
101 Marietta Street, Suite 3310, Atlanta, GA 30303
  • Postnuptial Agreements
  • Child Custody

Why choose this provider?

The Porter Law Firm works with individuals and families in the Atlanta area. The law office represents clients during the divorce process, offering mediation services for couples who wish to settle parenting time, property division, and child support issues outside of court. Its attorney, Benjamin Porter, is also a guardian ad litem, who advocates for children's rights. He has a decade of experience and has been named Top 10 Family Law Attorney in Georgia Under the Age of 40 by the National Academy of Family Law Attorneys.

Attorney Information

Attorney NamesExperience
Benjamin Porter - Founding Partner18 yrs

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.3
Google
4.3 / 5 (52)
Avvo
4.5 / 5 (16)
Facebook
4.2 / 5 (6)

(+1 additional source)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
3.8
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
––

Website
235 Peachtree St. NE Suite 214, Atlanta, GA 30303
  • Alimony
  • Child Custody
  • Divorce

Why choose this provider?

Juitt-Jackson Law is headquartered in Atlanta. This family law firm was founded in 2014 and has been helping clients resolve various legal issues since then. Owner and founder Narissa Juitt-Jackson handles uncontested and contested divorce, as well as related matters like child custody and grandparents' visitation. She also pursues paternity cases, assists in filing post-judgment modification and contempt, and serves as Guardian ad Litem. Juitt-Jackson stays current on recent legal developments as a member of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.1
Google
4.8 / 5 (16)
Facebook
5.0 / 5 (7)
Avvo
5.0 / 5 (3)

(+1 additional source)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
3.8
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
––

Website
50 Hurt Plaza Suite 1630, Atlanta, GA 30303
  • Domestic Violence
  • Alimony
  • Asset Distribution
  • Child Custody
  • Divorce

Why choose this provider?

Tessie D. Edwards & Associates is a family-owned and family-operated law firm that works with clients in Atlanta. It helps individuals reach mutual agreements to resolve a variety of family law matters, including child custody and support, paternity, and temporary protective orders. The firm also defends clients facing misdemeanor or felony charges, such as DUI and drug offenses. Founding Attorney Tessie D. Edwards is a former prosecutor who provides aggressive representation to uphold the rights and interests of families.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.7
Google
4.6 / 5 (54)
Avvo
4.8 / 5 (25)
Facebook
5.0 / 5 (14)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
3.8
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
––

Website
1201 West Peachtree Street Suite 2300, Atlanta, GA 30309
  • Adoption
  • Child Custody
  • Divorce

Why choose this provider?

The Litigation Corner is a legal office serving Atlanta residents. Lawyer Brittany M. Dixon heads the firm and focuses on family law practice. She counsels clients on family matters like divorce and child custody. She works to develop legal solutions that best serve her clients' interests in and out of court. Her office also helps battered women, men, and children obtain protective orders. In her pro bono work, Dixon provides legal assistance to intimate partner violence victims through the Fulton County Safe Families Office.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.8
Google
5.0 / 5 (16)
Avvo
4.5 / 5 (8)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
3280 Peachtree Road NE Floor 7, Atlanta, GA 30305
  • Child Custody

Why choose this provider?

Barnes Firm, Attorneys at Law, assists clients in Atlanta in working through their legal matters. Founding partner Jeffrey Barnes focuses his practice on family law, real estate litigation, and business claims. He has counseled clients in divorce actions involving significant assets located domestically and in foreign countries. He also has experience working on child custody and parenting time issues concerning habitual contempt of court by the direct custodial parent. Barnes drafts pre- and post-nuptial agreements and assist clients in modifying their court orders.

Attorney Information

Attorney NamesExperience
Jeffrey Barnes - Founding Partner19 yrs

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.4
Avvo
4.1 / 5 (9)
Facebook
5.0 / 5 (8)
Google
3.9 / 5 (7)

(+1 additional source)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
3.8
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
––

Website
3330 Cumberland Boulevard Suite 450, Atlanta, GA 30339
  • Alimony
  • Child Custody

Why choose this provider?

Hedgepeth Heredia is a legal firm that has been handling family law matters for individuals in Atlanta and the surrounding areas since 2006. Its attorneys represent clients going through the divorce process and resolve dissolutions through settlement or trial. They also help men and women in paternity cases, assist in drafting marital agreements, and fight for the rights of domestic violence victims. Jon W. Hedgepeth, a partner at the firm, is a certified practitioner of collaborative law.

Attorney Information

Attorney NamesExperience
Jon Hedgepeth - Partner33 yrs

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.1
Google
4.3 / 5 (32)
Avvo
4.4 / 5 (7)
Yelp
1.0 / 5 (4)

(+1 additional source)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
275 14th Street NW, Suite 200, Atlanta, GA 30318
  • Alimony
  • Asset Distribution
  • Child Custody
  • Divorce

Why choose this provider?

Ashley McCartney LLC Attorney at Law offers counsel and assistance from its office in Atlanta. It handles family law matters concerning adoption and divorce. The legal firm represents military and LGBTQ members undergoing a divorce and dealing with issues concerning child custody and visitation, asset division, and alimony. Its attorney, Ashley McCartney, also creates parenting plans. She was admitted to the bar in 2006 and established her firm five years later. The professional is part of the Atlanta Volunteer Lawyers Foundation.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.0
Google
4.2 / 5 (16)
Facebook
3.7 / 5 (6)
Avvo
3.7 / 5 (6)

(+2 additional sources)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
343 Atlantis Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30307
  • Alimony
  • Child Custody
  • Divorce

Why choose this provider?

Hawkins Legal Group represents individuals and families in Atlanta and nearby locations. It assists clients in various matters, including child support and custody, guiding them through the processes of adopting children, establishing paternity, and modifying court orders on alimony and parenting time. The firm also takes on divorce cases, representing clients in out-of-court settlements and trials. Hawkins Legal Group is headed by Melissa Hawkins, who started her legal career counseling governments as a bond attorney.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.8
Google
4.6 / 5 (29)
Avvo
4.9 / 5 (28)
Facebook
5.0 / 5 (17)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
3400 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 1100, Atlanta, GA 30326
  • Divorce
  • Postnuptial Agreements
  • Prenuptial Agreements

Why choose this provider?

aiLegal & Law serves residents of Atlanta with family law issues. The firm helps clients prepare estate plans. It also aids individuals with immigration concerns involving a family relations component. Founder and managing partner Lucy Lu is fluent in Mandarin, serving immigrant clients speaking English as a second language. Her concentration includes litigation and taxation. She also serves clients in San Francisco and Chattanooga. In addition, she is admitted to appear before the Executive Office for Immigration Review.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.7
Google
4.7 / 5 (347)
Avvo
3.3 / 5 (8)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
1100 Peachtree St. NE Suite 950, Atlanta, GA 30309
  • Asset Distribution
  • Child Custody

Why choose this provider?

Aaron Thomas Law is a team of trial attorneys helping clients in Atlanta and the surrounding areas. They represent couples seeking to file for divorce, whether on fault- or no-fault-based grounds. The legal experts also assist individuals seeking to enforce divorce and child custody and support court orders, filing cases against noncompliant parties. Aaron Thomas Law has worked with people of different backgrounds, including stay-at-home parents, small business owners, NBA All-Star players, and Grammy-award-winning artists.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0
Avvo
5.0 / 5 (38)
Google
5.0 / 5 (18)
Facebook
5.0 / 5 (7)

(+1 additional source)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
2973 Hardman Court Northeast, Atlanta, GA 30305
  • Alimony
  • Child Custody

Why choose this provider?

Kitchens New Cleghorn is a boutique firm serving Atlanta. Its attorneys, who have over a hundred years of collective experience, assist clients with adoptions, surrogacy contracts, and prenuptial agreements. They also counsel clients seeking to enforce or modify child custody orders and represent LGBTQ members who are planning to file for divorce, establish parental rights, and change their names and genders on birth certificates. Jeff Cleghorn, the firm's LGBTQ practice leader, received the Dan Bradley Humanitarian Award at the 2011 Human Rights Campaign’s Atlanta.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.0
Google
4.6 / 5 (14)
Yelp
4.0 / 5 (5)
Facebook
2.3 / 5 (3)

(+1 additional source)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
1100 Peachtree St. NE, Ste 200, Atlanta, GA 30309
  • Child Custody
  • Divorce

Why choose this provider?

Foster Law Firm works with clients in Atlanta who have legal family disputes. It works with couples filing for divorce and helps them address the related issues of child custody and support. If their health, safety, or livelihood is threatened, the firm can also assist clients in obtaining protection orders. Principal attorney Chinwe' N. Foster has been practicing law since 2005, but she began her family law practice in 2012. She has appeared on Court TV as a regular legal analyst.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0
Avvo
4.9 / 5 (67)
Google
5.0 / 5 (47)
Facebook
5.0 / 5 (6)

(+2 additional sources)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
1995 North Park Place Suite 200, Atlanta, GA 30339
  • Divorce

Why choose this provider?

Anene Farrey & Associates, Attorneys at Law, counsels individuals and families in and around Atlanta. It assists clients in a range of areas, from prenuptial agreements and marital property division to military and civilian divorce cases. It also advocates for the rights of fathers seeking to establish paternity and obtain fair child custody arrangements. The firm's founder, Onyema Anene Farrey, is a member of the Georgia Association of Black Women Attorneys. She has represented NFL athletes, celebrities, corporate executives, and business owners.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.6
Google
4.6 / 5 (35)
Facebook
5.0 / 5 (26)
Avvo
3.4 / 5 (10)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
101 Marietta Street NorthWest Suite 3650, Atlanta, GA 30303
  • Divorce

Why choose this provider?

E. Jones & Associates, LLC, is a family and insurance law practice helping individuals in Atlanta and the surrounding areas. Its team counsels clients undergoing a divorce, handling cases that involve military members and high-value assets. The legal professionals offer mediation services for couples looking to resolve issues out of court, assisting in the areas of paternity, visitation, and child support. The firm's owner, Ellaretha Coleman, is also admitted to practice in Florida. She grew up with divorced parents and knows firsthand how it can affect families.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.0
Avvo
4.6 / 5 (54)
Google
3.7 / 5 (48)
Yelp
1.5 / 5 (8)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Disclaimer:  Consumers utilizing Expertise.com are free to communicate and contract with any lawyer they choose. Expertise.com is not involved in the confidential attorney-client relationship. Featured lawyers pay a reasonable advertising cost to market their legal services withExpertise.com and must meet similar selection criteria as other lawyers. All cases are different. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What kinds of cases do family lawyers handle?

    Family lawyers handle all types of family-related issues, including divorce, child support and spousal support, custody, adoption, paternity and guardianship. Family attorneys can also handle prenuptial and postnuptial agreements and divide marital assets based on the policies outlined in these documents. Domestic violence cases are also within the purview of family law attorneys.

  • Is family court different from district court?

    In most states, family court is a division of the district court rather than a separate court system. Family law judges primarily preside over family disputes, such as divorce and custody hearings. Most states require family law judges to receive special training on how to best address family law matters.

  • How long do custody cases last in family court?

    The duration of custody cases can differ based on the circumstances surrounding the claim. A case in which parents agree to split custody can be quick, while lawsuits in which both parents or guardians are fighting for full custody can take much longer. Most child custody cases last three to 10 days, but this can vary under more challenging circumstances.

  • Why is there no jury in family court?

    There are no juries in family court cases because the concept of innocence or guilt does not apply. While there may be some cases in which additional opinions could be helpful, most cases are based on the letter of the law versus individual circumstances. Some states, including Texas, permit jury trials for family court cases, but this is uncommon.

  • What are the most common cases in family court?

    Family law covers a variety of different cases pertaining to familial relations. The most common cases in family court include:

    • Divorce cases, including settling issues of alimony, property distribution, and child care
    • Child custody and the determination of paternity
    • Domestic violence protection orders
    • Name changes, including modifications due to adoption or personal preference
    • Guardianship, including who will handle the care of a child or adult should current caretakers be unable to do so
    • Adoptions and the termination of parental rights
    • Juvenile matters, including child abuse and neglect, foster placements, and criminal conduct
    • Emancipation, which is the process of declaring a minor as independent from their parents
    • Approval of underage marriages

  • Do family lawyers handle mediation?

    Mediation can be a valuable part of a divorce case, counseling spouses to work through areas of disagreement in a fair, calm, and unbiased manner. Most, but not all, family lawyers handle mediation. Anyone who believes they may need intervention services is encouraged to ask about an attorney’s experience with resolving disputes, to ensure that support is available if necessary.