Things to Discuss With Your Divorce Lawyer in the Initial Consultation
Once you and your spouse decide to get a divorce, one of the first things you should do is hire a divorce attorney. As experts in the law, they can help you navigate the complex legal process to ensure that the court rules in your favor. That being said, you and your lawyer must be on the same page about certain things. It’s why the first consultation is simply held to discuss aspects of your case.
Current Status of Your Marriage
One of the first things your divorce lawyer will want to discuss is the current status of your marriage. So, if you’re currently separated from your spouse, it’s something your attorney should know. If you would like more information from professionals, contact Summerlin Divorce Lawyer
Although an informal separation, i.e., living apart from your spouse, doesn’t affect your court proceedings much, a legal separation can affect you. If you’re legally separated, it determines the grounds for division of property, alimony, child custody, and other aspects.
Your Job Status and Accommodation
As your lawyer, they’ll need to know about you and your partner’s current employment status. They’ll likely ask about where you and your spouse work, as well as both you and your spouse’s current job title. Other details include both partners’ salaries, as well as how long both of you have held the current job.
You should also inform your attorney about where you’re living. Are you currently sharing a home with your spouse? Are you living with other family members or minor children? These details can affect the divorce proceedings, so it’s best to be upfront.
When you and your spouse get divorced, both parents will be responsible for fulfilling the children’s needs. Child support is intended to ensure that your children receive an adequate standard of living. These payments can cover costs such as food, clothes, tuition, healthcare, and leisure activities. You’ll want to discuss with your attorney how much child support you’ll receive or pay, depending on whether you’re a custodial or noncustodial parent.
Having children can lengthen the divorce process because the court needs to find suitable living arrangements for your children. Usually, lawyers recommend that you and your partner try mediation if it’s in the best interests of your children. In the event that mediation isn’t possible, you’ll need to discuss the possibility of getting custody of your children.
If you and your spouse contest visitation and custody, the court will perform a custody evaluation. This is when a trained evaluator will gather information about both parents and their relationship with the children. An evaluation is performed when you and your spouse see each other as unfit for having custody of the children.
Shared Real Estate Assets and Property Division
In most cases, you and your spouse’s shared assets will be split evenly between both parties. Even so, your divorce attorney will need to go over a list of your assets. During the initial consultation, you may have to provide details about properties, such as their respective addresses, how you paid for them, and when you acquired them.
You should also mention whether you’ve refinanced the mortgage on the property and whether each of you claims a separate interest in the property. At this point, you should remember to mention whether there’s any specific asset you wish to retain ownership of.
If you and your spouse have any shared accounts or financial assets, you’ll need to inform your lawyer. Moreover, you should avoid using the money in the accounts for personal expenses. Similarly, you’ll also be advised against trying to hide certain assets or moving money out of the joint account.
Circumstances of the Divorce
It’s likely that your lawyer will ask about the circumstances surrounding your divorce. This is essential in determining the current trajectory of your case. Therefore, you should make sure to mention whether the divorce is amicable or if you and your spouse have wronged each other in some way. This includes mentioning factors such as adultery, abuse, or addiction and whether they played a part in the decision to get a divorce.
If you were the victim of abuse, it could help your attorney prepare a solid case so the court rules in your favor. However, remember not to hide any facts from your attorney, even if they pertain to issues of addiction or adultery. As your legal counsel, knowing the facts can help them represent you better.
Mention Your Must-Haves
When the divorce proceedings begin, you should prepare yourself for the negotiation and compromise that follows. There’s a chance that you won’t retain possession of all your assets, but your divorce lawyer can help ensure that you get the things that are most important to you.
Therefore, you’ll need to be honest about which things you want to keep. For instance, do you want to retain custody of your children? Or do you want ownership of a specific real estate property? Once you narrow these down, you can start to consider things that are negotiable.
Here are some of the most commonly asked questions about the divorce proceedings.
How much does divorce cost?
The average cost of divorce is around $12,900, according to one survey by the legal encyclopedia, Nolo. Meanwhile, the median cost is about $7,500, but this can depend on where you’re based, whether or not the divorce is contested, and other such factors.
How much divorce lawyer cost?
Surveys show that lawyers can charge from $200 to over $300 an hour for their services. Ultimately, the final cost depends on how many hours a lawyer spends working on your divorce. Services such as document review and communications are billable.
How long divorce process takes?
How long divorce takes will depend on whether you take the case to court or are able to settle matters outside court. Usually, divorces take around one year, but you can speed up the process with an uncontested divorce.