A Profile of Mississippi Divorce Attorneys: Part II

Divorce attorneys—we all know of them, but how much do we really know about them?  In Part I of this two part series profiling the Mississippi divorce attorney, we addressed some basics about what a divorce lawyer is, when divorce law developed, and how one becomes a divorce attorney.  In this segment, we will continue our study on divorce attorneys, looking at the commonality of the practice, average pay scale, and the reason behind all those lawyer jokes.

How many divorce lawyers are there in Mississippi?

There are over 7,000 active resident attorneys in the state of Mississippi.  This amounts to approximately 23 lawyers per 10,000 residents, which is actually below the U.S. average of nearly 40 attorneys per 10,000 residents.  There is no official organization that provides data on the number of attorneys practicing within a specialty, however, a search of the website avvo.com, which allows users to rank attorneys, reveals over 100 divorce lawyers in the state.  Justia.com, another lawyer ranking site, lists over 200.  There are likely many more firms in the state who handle divorces as part of a more general practice.  In the Jackson area, over 60 attorneys advertise themselves as divorce attorneys.

What is the average salary of a Mississippi divorce attorney?

Divorce lawyers nationally earn an average of $56,000 annually, which is on the lower end of average for attorneys across all disciplines nationwide.  Salaries can vary greatly by region with those in the South typically earning less, though lower cost of living can equalize these two factors.

How many divorces occur each year?

A divorce occurs every 13 seconds in the U.S.  Over a two million couples will wed each year, and over a million couples will divorce.  Mississippi has a slightly higher than average number of divorces a year, with 4 individuals per every 1,000 obtaining a divorce.

Is the field of divorce law expected to grow?

Divorce law, and its broader accompaniment of family law, is expected to continue to grow as an industry.  Employment of divorce lawyers is expected to increase 13% in the coming years.  Interestingly, statisticians show that as the economy improves, the number of divorces will actually increase.  It is theorized that individuals in troubled marriages choose to wait out the worst of an economic turndown before feeling comfortable enough to finally pursue the divorce they have wanted.  Therefore, as our economy continues to shakily climb, the number of divorces might jump in coming years, meaning more business for divorce lawyers.

Why do attorneys have such bad reputations?

We have all likely heard a number of lawyer jokes and perhaps laughed at a lawyer’s expense.  While the public perception of lawyers is not all bad, some negative associations do seem to follow the practice.  One possible reason for this is the simple fact that people tend to only need an attorney when something has gone wrong, often terribly wrong, in their lives.  Whether it be a bitter divorce, criminal charges, or financial woes, you see an attorney when you are at your worst which might tend to color your perception of the field.

The media also has much to do with the bad reputation of lawyers.  Television shows and movies often depict the stereotypical greedy or money hungry attorney.  Further, the sensationalizing of certain lawsuits, such as the McDonald’s hot coffee suit, has led some to form a negative opinion of lawyers as greedy and willing to bring frivolous suits.

Despite unfair media depictions, most attorneys, particularly divorce attorneys, enter the profession with the desire to help their clients.  Divorce lawyers understand that they are assisting their clients through what is likely the lowest point of their lives.  With their unique skill set, thorough research, and dedication, divorce attorneys can lead clients through divorce to a brighter future.

The Law Office of Matthew S. Poole: Providing Skilled and Compassionate Representation

At The Law Office of Matthew S. Poole, we care deeply about each of our clients and devote an inordinate amount of time and study to ensuring our clients obtain the best possible outcome from their divorce.  Call attorney Matthew S. Poole today at (601) 573-7429 to see how he can begin shaping your tomorrow.

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