When you got married, you may likely did not give any thought that you may be talking with an attorney to prepare for a divorce. You may be nervous and unsure if you want to dissolve your marriage, and you may be unsure of what will happen to your assets, and how you will manage the relationship between your kids and your spouse. In all, meeting with a family law attorney for the first time can be an awkward experience
Nevertheless, this post will give you some pointers on how to prepare for an initial consultation.
Keep your emotions in check – The prospect of divorce can bring on a range of emotions, so it is okay to vent about how disappointed you are that you are at this point. Keep in mind that a consultation is an opportunity to get basic legal advice, not a therapy session. After all, lawyers are trained to advise people on how the law will apply to the facts. They are not psychologists.
Think about the big picture – It is helpful to have a general idea of what you want out of the divorce. Specifically, you should think about how to manage your own separate household, whether you will need financial support, and how you continue relationships with your kids.
Be prepared to discuss income – As we just mentioned, knowing what you and your spouse’s income is will help in determining whether spousal maintenance will be an issue. This information can also help in preparing a litigation budget if necessary.
Be prepared to discuss your assets and debts – Having a basic understanding of your finances, including bank accounts, retirement funds, as well as mortgages, student loans and credit card debts will enable the lawyer to get a basic idea of your situation.