The prospect of ending your marriage can be overwhelming. This article provides some guidance on where to start. During the initial phases of the divorce process (i.e., when you are preparing to file for divorce or right after your have been served papers) focus on considering your objectives, gathering evidence and finding a good lawyer.
Being prepared for your first meeting with your lawyer can help you plan and implement your winning divorce strategy as quickly as possible. One of the first questions your lawyer should ask you is some variation on “what do you want to achieve?”, “what is most important to you during this divorce?” or “how can I best serve your interests?”
Prepare for these types of questions by considering your objectives for your divorce.
Divorce Strategy – What are your priorities?
What are your priorities? Do you want to minimize pain for your children? Get divorced as quickly as possible? Protect your finances? Achieve financial stability? Obtain custody of your children? Think long term.
So many factors will affect how you plan your winning divorce strategy. It is important to contemplate what you want to achieve and then make sure your legal team understands your needs.
However, if you are having trouble focusing your goals for your divorce, keep in mind that an experienced lawyer can help you clarify your goals by asking questions about your case. Your lawyer should be there to guide you through your divorce especially when you are feeling overwhelmed.
Divorce Strategy – Financial Preparation
Having financial documents already collected can help your lawyer assess your case and make informed recommendations.
The foundation of legal cases is evidence and a divorce case is no different. When planning your strategy, your lawyer will need to know what assets are involved and what factors could affect how the case is argued.
Consulting with your lawyer can help you target the facts that will be legally relevant.
In general, anything to do with money is pertinent and providing written documents is ideal. Examples of important financial documents you will need are mortgage statements, bank statements, and credit card statements. Tax records are also very useful. You will need copies of statements for your accounts, your spouse’s accounts and any joint accounts.
Divorce Strategy – Get all the documents as soon as possible
It is often easier to collect these documents while you are still living together as papers can get lost during a move. Many spouses can be difficult in handing over their financial papers once they have been handed divorce papers.
In cases where you and your spouse made verbal agreements regarding your finances, you can write down your recollection of your conversation and with information such as the current date, the date or approximate date when you think the conversation occurred, where the conversation took place and other details that may support your version of the events. This kind of information can help your lawyer understand your case and prepare your winning divorce strategy. Such information can be useful during negotiation and in some cases depending on the circumstances may even be considered evidence by the Court.
While it is helpful to be prepared, do not delay consulting a lawyer too long. A lawyer is often an excellent guide to help you clarify your objectives and a knowledgeable resource to direct you on the most important documents to obtain. Consulting a lawyer early in the process can save your time in the long run.
You can find additional links to divorce strategy related articles on our divorce strategy page. To get your case moving as quickly as possible, contact us as soon as possible. The Law Offices of Brian D. Perskin is available to assist you with any questions you may have regarding divorce in New York.