Everyone wants the best deal, me included. Divorce is no exception, and once you look into it, you realize it isn’t cheap, easy, or fun. If you find someone who is “cheap,” you probably don’t want to hire that lawyer because they’re likely desperate for business, new, don’t know what they’re doing, or some combination thereof.
All that said, instead of worrying about finding a Cheap Divorce Lawyer, you should focus on finding the right lawyer for you, and how you can help your lawyer represent you best while also limiting your costs.
When you provide documents to your lawyer, make sure they are organized. Your lawyer will give you a list of documents that you need to pull together. The total number of documents you will have to collect will depend on how long you were married, number of bank accounts, how many times you’ve changed jobs, whether you own a business, etc. Regardless of how many documents you have to pull together, make sure they are organized. Electronic documents are best. Most banks, credit cards, 401(k)s, etc. allow you to download all available documents online as PDFs. This will make your lawyer’s life a lot easier.
If you bring paper documents to your lawyer, or don’t organize the electronic documents, your lawyer will have to spend time doing it, and that will cost you money. It will also take your lawyer longer to organize your life than it would take you.
Save money, and ensure that you’re an active participant in the lawyer-client relationship, by providing organized financial documents.
What is important to you?
Time with your children? Your 401(k)? The house? Something else?
A client with clear goals is a lot easier to manage than a client who doesn’t know what they want, and a client that is hard to manage is likely to incur significantly higher legal fees.
Write down your goals with regard to custody, finances, and the Divorce general. Give that list of goals to your lawyer, talk to your lawyer about whether the goals are reasonable, and which steps the two of you need to take together to accomplish those goals. When there are a clear set of goals from the outset you won’t waste time going down rabbit holes, and when you don’t waste time you save money on legal fees.
3. Be Thoughtful in Your Communications
We know Divorce is stressful, and you may feel compelled to maintain a certain element of control. Sometimes that urge to maintain control results in numerous emails and phone calls to your lawyer. The problem is constantly emailing your lawyer is counter productive, and will cost you more money. Every time you send an email, or have a phone conversation, your lawyer will likely charge you. All those emails and phone calls will quickly add up.
So, what’s the solution? Unless the issue is urgent, wait until you have a few questions or comments, and then send an email to your lawyer, or set up a phone conversation. Another thing that will save you money relates to my first tip: Make sure all to provide supporting documentation in emails to your Divorce Lawyer, or prior to any phone call. For example, if you have a question about child support and income, ensure that you attach your most recent income information.
During Divorce it is common for folks to be Angry. After all, your relationship is over, and it may not have been your decision. Even if it was your decision to end the relationship, tempers commonly flare as you proceed down the road to settlement and Divorce.
It’s common to experience urges to do and say things to make your ex angry, mad, upset, cry, scream, yell, and incur additional legal fees. However, there is “the law of unintended consequences.” This means that the more angry, mad, upset, etc. you make your spouse, the more it is likely to cost you in attorney’s fees. Not only will it cost you more in attorney’s fees to deal with the back-and-forth with their lawyer, but it will make your case longer and harder to settle which will cost you more in attorney’s fees. See how that works?
Additionally, when it comes to negotiations, it’s important to keep your eye on Tip 2: Be Goal Oriented. Don’t fight over a chair, an ashtray, a piece of art, etc. In most instances you will spend more in attorney’s fees fighting over those items than it will cost you to replace them. Of course, if it’s a Queen Anne antique chair that’s a family heirloom we have a different story, but most of the time I see people fight over property that is easily replaceable.
If you pay attention and follow these 4 tips you can stop worrying about a Cheap Divorce Lawyer, and concentrate on finding the best lawyer for you. Together we will move through these 4 tips together, settle your case as quickly as possible, and for the least amount of money.
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