Monday, September 29, 2014

5 Ways An Attorney Can Help You During Divorce

Many people hire attorneys to help them navigate the divorce process but do you really know what all an attorney can do for you?  These are 5 things that attorneys do as a regular part of their job that you may or may not know about.  

1.Draft the legal documents.
In a divorce, there are many documents that need to be drafted which may be invalid if not properly drafted.  These include but are not limited to: Complaint for Divorce, Property Settlement Agreement, Depositions/Affidavits, Final Decree of Divorce.  An attorney will know and research exactly how to draft these documents to protect you in the future.

2. Provide legal advice.
Aside from the documents that must be filed, an attorney gives you legal advice.  This means the attorney will tell you whether or not a property settlement agreement is a good idea and if it's an offer you should consider accepting.  An attorney can provide advice on how to work out an appropriate visitation schedule for your children or how to handle a sudden change in that schedule (i.e., your ex-spouse did not bring the children home when he/she should have).

3. Negotiate. 
An attorney knows the tactics and strategies for negotiating a settlement agreement with your spouse.  Not being personally involved in the case, the attorney is not clouded by the extensive emotions that come into a divorce and can effectively negotiate on your behalf.

4. Direct you to other professionals.
An attorney should be able to provide you with the resources you need to make it through your divorce.  He/she should be able to give you references for a therapist or financial advisor should you need or want one. 

5. Explain the outcome.
If you do end up in court with a judge determining the outcome of your divorce, your attorney can explain to you what the judge has ruled, what your obligations are and what you should expect moving forward and, if applicable, how to change that ruling in the future (i.e, appeal, motion to reconsider, etc.).  

An attorney can do many things for you during your divorce process and these are only a few of the ways an attorney can help you.  If you are unsure of where to turn for help during your divorce, it doesn't hurt to call your attorney and see if they can help you.  If you are going through a divorce and would like a consultation, please contact us at (804) 447-0146 or