Divorces can be a complex and stressful process. However, an experienced divorce attorney can make the experience more manageable and take the legal burden off of your shoulders. While your head may be swimming with questions to ask in your initial divorce consultation, how do you choose the most appropriate questions to ensure a better understanding of your divorce case as well as the benefits your attorney can provide?
As a guide to your initial consultation, the following are five categories of questions that are crucial springboards for conversation with your chosen attorney.
Legal Fees and Strategies
It is imperative you know your attorney’s approach to fees and divorce strategy. This will help you prepare for any expenses that arise as your case goes forward. If your attorney’s approach is litigation or mediation can also affect the overall cost and direction of your case.
Questions to ask may include:
- What is your hourly fee? Are there any fixed fees or separate administrative fees?
- Have you handled divorces through litigation and mediation or alternative dispute resolution methods?
- What are your thoughts regarding my case strategy?
Issues Specific to Your Case
Ask your attorney about any matters specific to your case, especially if your case is complex. There may be complicated financial aspects to your case that require expertise or access to experts to manage or particular property division issues that need to be addressed. You could have child custody or visitation questions.
You might ask:
- What are my possible child custody options?
- Will I qualify for spousal support?
- How might our property or assets be divided?
Options Available for Pursuing Divorce
No two divorces are the same, and divorces do not have to follow the traditional divorce process. There are several options available to dissolve a marriage based on a divorcing couple’s situation. While highly contested divorces may end in litigation, others do not.
Ask your attorney about processes available to you. Also, find out about their experience with alternatives to litigation.
For instance, you could ask the following:
- Do I have to go to court to get a divorce?
- What is your approach to divorce litigation?
- What is the best option for seeking a divorce in my case?
What are California’s Requirements for Divorce?
Every state has specific requirements for divorce. Make sure you meet or are prepared to comply with all of California’s requirements before entering the divorce process. Your attorney can speak with you about any of California’s divorce laws and issues specific to divorce in California.
Questions to ask might be:
- Does California require any additional paperwork or documentation when filing for divorce?
- What are California’s residency requirements for a divorce?
- What are the grounds for divorce in California?
- What is the California divorce process and timeline?
What to Expect in a Contested Divorce Case
If there is an inability to reach an agreement in your case through another means, your case will go before the court for resolution. Unresolved issues generally include division of property, child custody and support, and spousal support. Therefore, you should know what to expect in a contested case and the benefits and drawbacks of going to court.
Possible questions to your attorney could include:
- How do you prepare for a contested case?
- How long does a contested divorce case usually take?
- What if only some of our issues are unresolved?
Contact an Experienced California Divorce Attorney Today
If you would like to speak with an experienced divorce attorney in San Francisco, contact Moradi Saslaw for a confidential consultation today. Our skilled, dedicated attorneys can help get you the results you desire for you and your family.
At Moradi Saslaw, we handle even the most complex divorce issues while communicating with you practically and promptly throughout the process. Whether your case is contested or is settled through mediation, let our team fight for you. Contact us online or call (415) 872-1080 today.