At The Law Office of Willie and Dasher, we offer free consultations for first-time clients who are in need of legal representation. We do our best to create a professional, yet welcoming environment for our clients so that they feel comfortable enough to discuss their case without any inhibition. In order to be able to make the most of your complimentary divorce consultation with us, we recommend that you come prepared and should know what kind of questions you need to ask the attorney.
How to Prepare for Your Initial Divorce Consultation
Documents to Bring to Your Consultation
While it is not necessary to bring any documents with you, it can make it easier for your attorney to assess your case and get a clearer picture of your needs, concerns, and goals regarding your divorce. Documents you should bring to your initial divorce consultation include:
- Divorce papers (if your spouse has already filed for divorce and served you with court papers)
- Prenuptial agreement
- Pay stubs, copies of your bank account statements, and tax returns
- A list of assets you and your spouse own
- Separation agreement (if you and your spouse have already drafted one)
- Incriminating evidence that can establish your spouse’s fault (if you are planning to file for fault-based divorce)
Questions to Ask Your Attorney
It is prudent to make a list of all the questions you want to ask your attorney and bring it with you to the divorce consultation. The most important questions you should ask your Austin family law attorney include:
- How long have you been a family law attorney?
- Do you focus only on family law or do you handle other types of cases as well?
- What is your fee structure?
- Do you normally settle your cases out of court? How often do you take your cases to trial?
- What do you think might be the best possible outcome in my case?
- What are the possible problems you see with my case?
- Is there a worst case scenario I should prepare for?
- How do you think my marital assets might be divided?
- Will you be personally handling my case? If not, who will?
- How soon do you respond to phone calls and emails?
- Whom should I contact in case of an emergency?
What to Tell Your Attorney
During your divorce consultation, the attorney might ask you questions about your spouse, your marital relationship, your children, and the reasons for ending your marriage. Make sure you answer these questions as honestly as you can. Do not hide any detail or try to underplay or exaggerate any point to make your spouse look bad or to make you look like the one who is being wronged.
Remember – no detail is too sensitive or too embarrassing to be shared with your attorney. Your attorney is not just your legal representative, but also a trusted confidant and partner who will listen without judgment. The more honest you are and the more detailed you are in your responses, the easier it will be for the attorney to give their assessment of your situation.
Discussing the Possibility of Collaborative Divorce
If you and your spouse still respect each other and want to end things amicably, collaborative divorce might be the right option for you. Our legal team has handled several collaborative divorce cases over the years and gotten amazing results that might not have been possible through arbitration or litigation. Based on this, it’s fundamental to ask your attorney about the possibility of ending your marriage through collaborative divorce.
Bringing a Third Party to Your Divorce Consultation
Generally speaking, it is not a good idea to bring a third party – whether it is your relative, friend, neighbor, or barista – to your divorce consultation. First, bringing a third party to your consultation can nullify the attorney-client privilege. Secondly, and more importantly, the presence of a third party – even if it is someone you have known all your life – can make it difficult for you to share some intimate details about your marriage. It can also be difficult to listen to the advice or concerns of your attorney if the third party disagrees. It is always a judicious idea to visit with your potential attorney alone.
Planning to File for Divorce? Schedule Your Free Divorce Consultation Today!
If you are thinking of ending your marriage and are in need of a skilled family law attorney you can trust, you cannot go wrong with Eric M. Willie. Immensely knowledgeable and highly respected, Eric M. Willie brings over two decades of experience to the table. He can protect your rights as a spouse and as a parent and will fight tirelessly to achieve the best possible outcome for your divorce through mediation, arbitration, collaboration, or litigation.
To discuss your case with a seasoned and reliable Austin family law attorney, call our firm today at 512-478-0834 or contact us online and schedule your free divorce consultation.