Divorce can be emotional and stressful. You have taken the very difficult step of deciding to end your marriage. You have spent time researching local attorneys. And now you are preparing for your initial consultation. How can you make the most of this first meeting with your divorce lawyer? Here are five costly errors frequently made during divorce consultations…and how you can avoid them.
Not telling the truth: It is never a good idea to hide relevant information during your divorce consultation. If you decide to retain the attorney with whom you are meeting, this person will be your advocate during your divorce. Past DYFS/DCPP involvement, owing child support, past court orders or criminal history are all very relevant. Your consultation is confidential and any information you share during the consult is never revealed to anyone else. Feel confident being fully open with your prospective attorney. Don’t hold back!
Not taking notes: You are going to be presented with a great deal of information during your consultation and it will be impossible for you to remember it all. Take notes that will serve to refresh your memory and help keep you focused later as you look for requested documents and statements needed by your attorney.
Not being on time: The attorney has set aside only a certain amount of time to meet with you. You want to make the most out of this brief period of time and arriving late could deprive you of valuable information and advice.
Not asking questions: Your consultation should be a give and take. You are hearing lots of new information about the law and your rights. It is completely natural for you to have questions and you should not hesitate to ask them. Don’t be shy; this is the purpose of a consultation.
Not stating what is most important to you: If you are most concerned about how you will financially support yourself during and after your divorce, let the attorney know this is a major priority for you. This way, you won’t spend the time talking about custody rights if you and your spouse have already agreed upon this. If you strongly want to stay in your marital home, tell this to the attorney, so that he or she can focus on advising you how this is possible.
Are you ready to meet with an attorney? If you have filed or are thinking of filing for divorce, our experienced and knowledgeable attorneys can assist you. Please contact us to schedule your free initial attorney consultation.