One of the most difficult things adults can face is divorce. No two divorces are alike, as you have different personalities, financial situations, children, property, and perspectives to consider.
In the best of cases, divorce is a mutual decision, with the parties amicable and in agreement throughout the entire process. Sadly, those cases are few and far between. More often, there are disagreements regarding finances, child custody, and property. Some divorce proceedings turn vicious, painful, and last a long time.
Mediation can help both parties come to terms with decisions, although even that does not always work. The most crucial step is to find a divorce attorney who will work (and fight when necessary) to ensure you receive the best settlement possible.
Some of the hardest things about divorce are:
Telling children, family members, and friends
Having the “talk” with others is often painful, stressful, and challenging. Telling your children that their parents will no longer live under the same roof is not easy and is not the same for younger children as it is for older ones. Avoid going into details about the divorce and focus on assuring them that both parents still love them and that the divorce is not their fault.
Worrying about finances
Money differences can lead to divorce, and divorce can extenuate arguments over finances. Speaking with a financial advisor or accountant, in addition to your divorce attorney, can help you make better decisions. Monetary worries are complicated when one spouse has been financially dependent on the other throughout the marriage.
Finding a new home
Having to leave your home, pack, and make a fresh start is especially difficult when a significant portion of your life is coming to an end. Think of it as a new beginning rather than an end, if possible.
Your ex is dating again
Learning that your ex is seeing someone theviralnewj new can be emotionally difficult. Keep as busy as you can socially, focus on your life, and build a new future.
Why Is the Proper Lawyer Important for a Case?
Choosing the right lawyer is the most critical decision you can make. You want someone with a proven track record of positive outcomes for their clients. Not only should the attorney have experience in the specific field, but they should also be excellent communicators, listeners, advisors, and negotiators.
The first step is asking others who have been through a divorce for attorney recommendations. If they thought they received a reasonable settlement and were happy with their attorney, you can put those names at the top of your list. Conversely, if they thought their ex-spouse’s attorney was better, ask for those names, too.
You want a divorce or family law attorney specializing in divorce with an excellent reputation in the legal community. An attorney in practice for many years has built relationships with others in the legal community that can help in your outcome – especially if the divorce is contentious.
Here are some reasons why finding the right lawyer is vital for your divorce:
Saving time and efforts
An experienced lawyer knows what is needed and can help you navigate the process quickly. They will ensure that every required document is provided promptly to facilitate a speedy outcome and reduce costs.
Understanding local laws and judicial viewpoints
Divorce laws, regulations, and judicial viewpoints can vary considerably from one city, county, or state to another. The attorney should have significant experience with divorce in the county where the case is filed. Firsthand knowledge of how the judge handling the case rules is crucial, especially when alimony is involved.
If you do not feel comfortable communicating with your chosen attorney, you are less likely to get the outcome you desire. Finding a lawyer who listens to you and addresses your concerns is crucial. You want to ensure that your attorney explains everything clearly, informing you about what you need to know. Also, discuss communication styles (phone calls, emails, or face-to-face meetings) to verify your communication needs are met.
Save your mental state
Divorce is one of the most stressful and sometimes traumatizing processes people can experience. Adversity, contention, financial, and other difficulties can negatively affect you. Additionally, if you are over thirty, changes in hormonal balance may also play a crucial role in your emotional stability. For example, human growth hormone deficiency directly impacts mood, anxiety, stress, and depression. Find out about all HGH benefits (for men) and if receiving hormone replacement can help make going through a divorce easier for you.
Dedicated to your interests
Your attorney should put your interests and well-being above all else to get you the best outcome. They should be on top of things right away and respond to you in a timely fashion.
What Question Should You Ask?
Because choosing the right divorce attorney is crucial to a positive outcome with as little stress as possible, preparation for your consultation is essential. Coming prepared for the meeting with the necessary information and a list of questions is paramount. Ask the attorney beforehand what information they wish you to bring to the meeting.
Most divorce attorneys will provide a complimentary consultation to discuss your case, allowing you to see if they are the right “fit” for you. During this “getting to know each other” meeting, you will want to provide vital information to help the attorney assess your situation and offer valuable guidance and advice on how to proceed.
Not only will you be asking questions of the attorney, but they will also be asking some of you, including some that might seem sensitive or awkward. Remember, the information requested and provided is crucial to your case.
You will want to find an attorney whose approach and style align with your values and needs. To do so, prepare a list of questions on a legal pad that you can ask and make any pertinent notes.
Here are some questions to ask that will help you select the best divorce lawyer to handle your case:
How often do you reach an out-of-court divorce settlement agreement?
The answer to this question will let you know if the attorney tends to spend more time (and your money) going to court.
What is your take on collaborative divorce?
Collaborative divorce can save significant time and money if both parties agree to handle things amicably. Both parties must use attorneys willing to engage in this method of divorce.
What kind of experience do you have handling financial settlements?
Ask specific questions regarding your situation to ensure the attorney has experience dealing with your financial concerns, especially with alimony, child support, and property division.
Who will be handling my case?
Sometimes, in large law firms, the attorney you meet with may not be your actual lawyer. Ask who will represent you upfront so you can feel confident in your proceedings.
What is your caseload like?
An attorney with a heavy caseload may not be able to devote the attention necessary to your case.
Are you familiar with the family court justices?
You want to ensure your attorney knows what they might be against if the case goes to court.
How will you keep me informed?
Be upfront about your communication needs, whether you want to know every detail or only significant developments, and ensure the attorney is on the same page. Keeping “in the loop” can also help save money when things get out of hand, and a particular strategy is not working.
Are you familiar with the opposing lawyer?
Knowing the other party’s attorney can make a difference, especially if they have a good working relationship and mutual respect.
What outcome can I expect?
Asking the attorney’s opinion on your case after you present your information can provide crucial insight. While never “written in stone,” as this is a judgment based on experience, the attorney should be willing to prepare you for the good and the bad.
How much will you charge me?
Divorce can be expensive. You need to know how much the attorney will charge, what the retainer fee covers, how additional charges are billed, and when you will be expected to pay.
Make Sure the Attorney You Hire Does Not Have Any Significant Connection with the Other Parties Involved
Conflict of interest can occur when an attorney has responsibilities associated with or connected to another client, former client, or a third party. A lawyer must clearly identify any possible conflict that could hinder their ability to get you the best resolution to your case.
Finding out about any conflict of interest is especially crucial when dealing with a large law firm. While the divorce attorney handling your case may be dedicated to you, if another lawyer in the company deals with any business or other dealings associated with your former spouse, their business, or family members, it could be seen as conflicting interests.
Deciding to get a divorce is difficult, no matter the situation. It signals the end of a once-cherished relationship and the start of a new life. Most people enter a marriage saying they would never divorce, yet situations change, and divorce becomes inevitable for many.
If you find yourself in this situation, finding the right divorce lawyer is crucial to providing you with the best possible outcome. When children are involved, it is vital to put their needs first and never subject them to what is happening with the divorce. The situation is difficult enough, especially when emotions are raw. It is crucial to protect them and ensure that any settlement provides for their best interests.
Life will eventually improve once the divorce is finalized, and you can focus on healing and rebuilding your life. Allow yourself to get through this process and know that a better future awaits.