(1) Just as you would before doing to the doctor, write down any questions you may have for the lawyer so that you don't forget to ask them and save some space after each so you will have a convenient spot to write down the answer that they give you.
(2) If there is anything particularly important you want to tell them, write that down too. Remember, it will be kept confidential unless it needs to be shared for a public-safety reason. You may think it too embarrassing or unimportant to mention, but it very well may be quite important so please share it.
(3) Gather up any papers that you think might be relevant. Anything that has been filed with any court relative to your situation definitely counts. Even if not, there may be some documents that you have been keeping or could readily obtain (such as birth certificates, marriage certificates, cell phone texts, e-mails, pictures, etc.) that may be very helpful.
Some other good ideas to help you prepare...
(4) If time allows, make a set of copies of everything that you think might be relevant and bring those with you to the meeting so that the attorney can add them to your file without having to charge you their hourly rate to make copies. An electronic copy that can be e-mailed is even better, if you have access to a scanner or another way to convert the item to an electronic format.
(5) If you plan on paying with cash, go to the bank or ATM and withdraw the money the day before your appointment if possible. Otherwise, don't forget your checkbook or whichever card you want to use.
(6) Some people feel better or less scared about going to a lawyer's office, especially for the first time, if they bring along a friend or relative. You are welcome to do so. However, realize that any attorney-client confidentiality you otherwise would enjoy at that meeting is lost if a third party (your friend or relative) is present.
Now relax and have a productive meeting! Good luck!
This legal guide should not be construed as formal legal advice or the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.