In the United States, when a couple gets married for the first time, their chances of getting a divorce are about 50%. For second and third divorces, the chances of a divorce are even greater. Not a very cheery outlook on marriage, but that doesn’t mean a couple can’t beat the odds. The divorce rate means there are a lot of divorce attorneys working hard for their clients, but it also means that if they want referrals, they need to make their clients happy.
When building a successful family law practice, it behooves attorneys to set their clients up for success, and this includes imparting to their new clients what they’ve gleaned from years of handling divorce and in some cases, divorce mediation. The idea is that when an attorney can share something important that they know with a new client, it can improve the outcome of the client’s case. That being said, below are 6 secrets that our divorce attorneys want to share with you.
1. Contested divorces are expensive.
On average, contested divorces can cost $15,000 to $30,000 (if not more) and they can get tied up in the courts for years, all the while draining the marital estate. Some pit bull attorneys will be quick to fight a case because they know they’ll make a fortune in attorney fees. This should not be the first go-to solution in a divorce case. Instead, it should be a last resort after it’s become clear that there is no other choice.
2. You may need to live frugally for a while.
During the divorce process, the last thing people want to do is think about cutting their expenditures, but in the face of a divorce, it’s wise for spouses to take a long, hard look at their spending habits. Sometimes, the most logical choice is to make some changes in their lifestyle. If the concept of cutting back on your spending is dispiriting, it’s better to temporarily cut corners than it is to hire a bargain basement lawyer who could end up getting you a raw deal.
3. You may have to take responsibility for your marriage.
California is a no-fault divorce state, so in most situations a spouse’s marital misconduct won’t affect the outcome of their divorce proceedings, but there are a few limited circumstances where it can.
If a spouse is sloppy about an affair, it can affect child custody. If a spouse wastes marital funds on a paramour, it can affect their property settlement. And, if a spouse commits domestic violence, it can make it so he or she is not entitled to spousal support they’d normally be entitled to receive.
4. You’ll save money if you’re organized.
Divorce attorneys usually charge clients by the hour. If you stay on top of things by being organized and having your documents handy, there’s a very good chance you’ll save money on attorney fees. One of the best ways to get started is to start your divorce file right away. In your divorce file, gather all documentation that could have an effect on your divorce proceedings.
Run your credit reports, gather your last three years of tax returns, make copies of all of your financial documents, and make a list of all of your account information. Keep the file neat and organized. You’re going to need access to it all.
5. It may be smart to have a collaborative divorce.
Sure, your attorney can encourage you to fight every battle with your spouse, but that is not necessarily going to help you or your divorce. While it may be hard to reach an agreement with your spouse when you can’t stand being in the same room with him or her, seeking a collaborative divorce can alleviate a lot of the stress of divorce, before, during and after it’s all over.
If you have children together or run around in the same crowd of friends, you could be in each other’s lives for many years to come. If you can set your differences aside and pursue an amicable divorce, you can go your separate ways without either of you feeling like you’ve been taken advantage of. It makes for a much more peaceful life after divorce.
6. Mediation can be extremely beneficial.
Some divorce firms also offer divorce mediation services – our office is one of them. Mediation can be a game changer. Divorce mediation is a process where you and your spouse use a neutral third party to help you negotiate a fair divorce agreement. It is a low-cost way to achieve a mindful divorce. It’s also a great way for cordial couples to practically address every issue they have, including child custody, and our office is one of them.
Divorce mediation can be a game changer. It is a process where you and your spouse use a neutral third party to help you negotiate a fair divorce settlement. It is a low-cost way to achieve a mindful divorce. It’s also a great way for cordial couples to practically address every issue they have, including child custody, property division, insurance, and so on. However, it only works with couples who are willing to work together until they reach an agreement they’re both satisfied with.
Related: Divorce: It’s Just Business
We are only scratching the surface in regards to secrets of a divorce lawyer. If you’re looking for a Los Angeles divorce lawyer, we invite you to contact our office. We’d be happy to share what we’ve learned with you.