This blog explores some of the reasons why it’s important to hire an experienced family law attorney for your divorce. I am often asked, “do I need a lawyer”. The simple answer is, “probably”. Although there are some limited circumstances where you may be able to successfully navigate the legal system on your own, almost all contested cases (cases where there are disagreements on the issues) benefit significantly from the expertise and guidance of an experienced family law attorney. Although you may be tempted to try and save money by representing yourself, the reality is the legal system is complex and can be incredibly perplexing for inexperienced litigants and you will often end up paying more in the long run.
For example, I am often approached by clients looking for relief from messy agreements or unfair judgments issued after they represented themself through the initial court case. The process of trying to go back and correct a mistake that could have been avoided with the assistance of competent counsel is time-intensive and costly. It’s also difficult to “undo” a mistake. The bottom line is that a good family law attorney will not leave money on the table or structure a divorce agreement that is unfair or has you paying your spouse more than you need to in alimony and or child support.
This is especially true if your soon to be ex is represented by an attorney. Did you know that judges do not give any special treatment to parties who represent themselves in their divorce case? That means you will be held to the same standards as the lawyer who is representing your soon to be ex-spouse. The difference is that your spouse’s attorney is an expert in the law. Most likely, you are not. You are at a significant disadvantage in any hearing and could easily jeopardize your case by saying or doing the wrong thing.
You will find yourself making a plethora of decisions that will affect the rest of your life moving forward. If you have children, these decisions will also affect their lives. To make matters worse, these decisions need to be made at a time where it may very well be difficult for you to think clearly. Having an experienced attorney who can evaluate your situation from all angles, advise as to the possible outcome and offer practical solutions can be invaluable.
That is where a top-notch family law attorney comes into play. Although there are many firms and attorneys who market themselves as “family law attorneys”, the reality is an attorney who focuses solely on one particular area of law, like family law, has a distinct advantage over others who practice in multiple areas. An attorney who focuses on family law exclusively is going to know more about the law, the court, and the legal process than an attorney who spends only part of the time on family law matters.
I focus exclusively on family law matters because this is the area of law I am passionate about. I am an accomplished litigator and have taken many cases to trial with successful results. I have also resolved many cases outside of court through negotiation. Whatever your issues are, I welcome the opportunity to discuss further to see how I can assist you.