Most people find navigating family law issues to be a complicated process, and they’re grateful to have an experienced family law practitioner help guide them through it. Here are 5 reasons to hire a family law lawyer instead of representing yourself on your family law case.
1) You’re unfamiliar with family law or family court.
Family law is a specialized area of the law. A family law lawyer, especially an experienced one, can help minimize the emotional and financial costs of litigation by obtaining an optimal result if at all possible at an early stage of litigation, or avert litigation altogether through far less expensive and time consuming alternative dispute resolution methods, and draw-up a legally-binding domestic contract. If you’re not adequately versed on this area of the law, what documents you need and how to complete them, or don’t know the various procedural requirements, you may jeopardize your case and end up with an undesirable outcome which may cause you further, unnecessary emotional and financial hardship.
2) You need objective advice during an emotional time.
It’s difficult to make life-changing decisions about yourself and your family when under stress. It’s easy for self-represented parties to say or do things that come off as argumentative, aggressive, or vindictive; a family lawyer creates a buffer between you and the other side, and can prevent you from allowing your emotions and lack of impartiality to sabotage your case. A good family law lawyer will separate themselves from the emotional side of a case and will also let you know, given the circumstances of your case, if you’re being unreasonable as to what is possible and what is not.
3) A family law lawyer can suggest options and solutions you didn’t even know existed.
A family law practitioner can evaluate your case, offer the best available dispute resolution method for your situation, and let you know the likely outcome if you proceed to court. If you represent yourself, you may agree on settlement terms that are unworkable or unfair which may cause further problems down the road. A family law lawyer will help you create a reasonable and workable settlement proposal; if the proposal is coming from the other side, your lawyer will let you know whether to settle, make a counter-proposal or fight it out in court.
4) One word: paperwork.
Going through a separation or divorce involves a lot of paperwork to be filled out, served on the other side, and if your in court, filed. Knowing which forms you’ll need for your situation can be confusing, However, producing full and timely disclosure is crucial, since they will be relied upon to decide the outcome of your case. For example, using the wrong numbers, tone or words, or omitting something, could result in the judge perceiving you as careless, combative, or trying to hide information — which will damage your credibility and by extension your case. A family law lawyer knows what forms you’ll need, and how to fill them out properly and persuasively, increasing your chances of an optimal outcome.
5) A family law practitioner can help you focus on the Big Picture.
A good family law lawyer will focus on creating the best deal possible — which may mean helping you to compromise on some issues so that you can get more of your “must haves.” An experienced family law lawyer will guide you through the process, pursue your interests and needs, minimize unnecessary stress and costs, and give you the peace of mind and confidence to move forward with your life.
The Law Office of Robert Molinari can help guide you through every step of the family law process. Start now with a free consultation.