A recent article in the Huffington Post by by Christian Denmon discussed advice that divorce attorneys should give their clients, but occasionally do not. Most of these tips revolve around financial matters and deserve a quick discussion, but we want to highlight this important advice for those considering divorce so you can't say thisdivorce attorney held anything back.
Divorce is not cheap
Though this can surely come as no surprise, the Huffington Post article points out that the cost of divorce is sometimes hidden by lawyers in an attempt to avoid giving clients sticker shock. Beyond asking about billable hour rates and retainer amounts, you should discuss the numbers that contribute to the total cost, which may include expert witnesses or other professionals. Explain your case truthfully and in detail so that your attorney can develop a plan going forward, which will be helpful in putting a more precise estimate on the total cost of the divorce.
Attorneys can milk your case
Though this is hardly a universal problem, it is true that there are some unsavory lawyers who take advantage when they see an opportunity to run up the costs of a divorce. Rather than encouraging reasonableness and sanity, those types of lawyers encourage dissent, which almost always leads to higher divorce bills. After all, the more fighting that takes place, the more money that must be paid to the lawyers to handle the fighting. Be wary about this, and if you get the sense that the lawyer is more interested in doing battle than protecting your your best interests, move on to someone else.
Seek emotional support from non-lawyers
Though it is important to be able to discuss questions and concerns with your lawyer, it is just as important to understand that your lawyer is not meant to be your therapist. Not only are lawyers not trained to provide the kind of emotional and psychological support that divorcing couples need, they are also expensive. Rather than calling up your lawyer to vent, call a friend, family member or counselor. Not only will you feel better, but you'll avoid the burden of expensive bills.
Source: “What Every Divorce Lawyer Should Tell Their Clients,” by Christian Denmon, published atHuffingtonPost.com.