Your initial consultation with a divorce attorney is a big step, but also a necessary one. There are a lot of benefits of hiring a divorce by attorney. An experienced family law attorney will save you time and money in the long run. There are a few things you should know and prepare for before your consultation to make the process run smoother.
What Happens During the Initial Consultation with a Divorce Attorney
Your initial meeting will help you get to know the attorney, and give you the chance to ask questions. Most people don't go into marriage thinking they'll get divorced, so when it happens to them they can feel unprepared and unequipped to handle it. You want to feel comfortable speaking candidly with your attorney and be reassured of their competency. You can help achieve this by preparing ahead of time.
Depending on where you are in your divorce, your meeting will look a little different, so you should be prepared to bring your attorney up to speed on what has happened so far. Maybe the divorce is brand new for you, and you'll need to start from square one. On the other hand, maybe you and your spouse have already come to agreements on a number of issues which will expedite the process. During the initial meeting, your attorney will gather relevant information, answer all your questions, and walk you through the divorce process so you know what to expect in the coming weeks and months.
How to Prepare for a Divorce Attorney Consultation
Come with questions and write them down ahead of time. This will allow you to use your time more efficiently and ensure you don't forget anything. In addition to specific questions you may have about your particular situation, be sure to address the following if your attorney doesn't bring them up first.
Questions to ask an attorney during a consultation
- What other kinds of cases do you handle besides divorce and family law?
- How much of your practice is focused on family law?
- How long have you been practicing as a divorce attorney in Missouri?
- What is your hourly rate, and how do you prorate your time?
- Do you require a retainer?
- What's the most efficient way to communicate my questions as they come up?
- What should I expect during the divorce procedure?
- What's the best way to determine custody decisions, and how is child support determined?
- Will I owe or receive spousal support?
- How will our joint property and finances be divided?
What to Bring to Your Initial Consultation
You'll also want to gather relevant divorce documents that will help your attorney answer your questions and be able to address monetary concerns regarding asset allocation, alimony, and child support.
- Tax returns
- Pay stubs
- Legal docs
- Potential incriminating evidence
Schedule a Consultation with a Missouri Divorce Attorney
When faced with a divorce, it can be tempting to want to get through it as quickly as possible. This is a stressful time, but working with a skilled attorney will ensure you're getting what you're entitled to, and that your needs are being met. Take the first step and schedule a consultation with the Joshua Wilson Law Firm today.