A divorce attorney is who you need next once you have decided that you are going through with the divorce you’ve been thinking about for a long time. You will want to speak to an attorney as soon as possible to discuss your divorce plans.
There are many family law attorneys you can contact, and most consultations are free. You need to look for a divorce attorney who knows how to put you at ease. After all, a divorce is a serious matter and you’d have to deal with many uncomfortable things, so you need an attorney who can make you feel comfortable.
Since you are planning to meet a divorce attorney for the first time, it is reasonable to think about the kind of preparation you need to do in order to ensure that your first meeting will go smoothly.
There are definitely things you can try to prepare to have a more efficient discussion on your first meeting, but not preparing these things does not mean that your meeting would be a complete failure.
It’s just that with these prepared before your first meeting, your attorney would be able to easily address your concerns and make the necessary plans for your divorce case. If you can’t provide the information your attorney needs, he or she will have to assume things which do not always lead to accurate advice and plans for your divorce.
Hence, here are the things you can prepare before your first meeting with your divorce attorney:
1. General Information About Your Marriage
When you consult an attorney for the first time, you have to provide detailed information about your marriage and your family. This is because before each divorce case is different depending on individual circumstances of each marriage.
Your attorney won’t be able to advise you accurately about your divorce case unless he knows the details of your marriage. This information will also be necessary for your attorney’s drafts of your initial pleadings. You can also provide employment information for both spouses as well as significant dates in your marriage.
2. Marital Property Information
It is virtually impossible to go through a divorce without considering property issues. You can learn more about property division with this article, but before that, consider your marital properties. What kind of home do you own? Is your home mortgaged? Are there debts incurred during your marriage? All of these things are subject to property division, so if you can bring statements and account quotations to your first meeting with your divorce attorney, it would be really helpful.
3. Personal Property Information
If you have information about the property bank accounts and retirement accounts that belong only to you, it would provide your attorney with ample information to work with.
This information would be useful later on in establishing the line between your separate property and community property. This is very important in every divorce case, and you can learn more about it in this article.
Basically, when it comes to personal property, what you owned before the marriage is solely yours alone, and you also do not have the right to the property or accounts that your spouse owned prior to the marriage. If you want to protect your personal property, providing your attorney ample information about it as early as your first meeting would be a good move.
4. Children’s Information
When you are undergoing a divorce and you have children, matters associated with the divorce and related to your children are going to be the most difficult to deal with.
Most of the time, this is the most challenging issue you’ll ever face during your divorce case. While you have already prepared information about your marriage and children in ‘General Information’, you also need to think about conservatorship.
Disputes in many divorce cases often stem from issues with the children. Any parent would want to fight for the best interests of the children. By providing more detailed information about the children, you can prepare for issues such as visitation rights, child support, and primary conservatorship concerns.
What would be helpful for your meeting with a divorce attorney would be the academic information, health history, hobbies and extracurricular activities of the children. With these, your attorney can fashion a strategy in preparation for the negotiations that are sure to come later in the divorce process.
At your first meeting with your divorce attorney, it is understandable that you would have many questions. It is perfectly acceptable to ask questions, and your attorney is probably even expecting it. Feel free to ask questions.
To make it easier, outline all of your concerns or make a list of pertinent questions that you have. This would help you create a structured and efficient discussion and avoid situations wherein you would find yourself discussing the same issue again and again with your attorney. When your questions are more organized, your attorney would surely be more than happy to address your concerns.
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