We know that divorce is hard and can make people act in ways they normally would not. Our next few posts will take a look at common mistakes people make during the divorce process and how to avoid them. In this post, we will look at three mistakes people make when working with their lawyers during their divorce.
Mistake #1: Keeping secrets from your lawyer
Everyone does things they are not proud of, but you must be honest with your lawyer. The worst thing that can happen is for you to hide an important fact about your marriage or divorce, only to have your attorney blindsided in mediation, or even court, with the fact.
Your lawyer can only prepare to manage the problems in your case that they know about. This is especially true when it comes to money. Trying to hide assets can get you in trouble and could cost you more in the end. Secrets have a way of coming out in a divorce. Your lawyer is there to help you, so let them.
Mistake #2: Dragging your feet
You may not want to think about or deal with your divorce, but it will move forward with or without your participation. If you fail to respond in a timely manner to requests for information from your own attorney or the other side, you will only hurt yourself. You could miss your chance to make an argument for your point of view.
In addition, you should be aware that your lawyer could be charging you by the fraction of an hour and every time they have to ask you for the same information, you are increasing the amount of time they must spend on your case. Having all important documents organized and ready to go and actively participating in the process can save you money.
Mistake #3: Failing to listen to your lawyer
Of course you want things to go your way during your divorce, but you may have to face some harsh truths when the law is not in your favor. Your lawyer will always argue on your behalf, but they will also be honest with you about your best options. Ignoring your attorney’s advice and clinging to unrealistic expectations could lead you into an expensive trial that gets you no better outcome than mediation or a negotiated settlement would have, or in some cases, a worse outcome. Remember that your attorney has your best interest at heart and knows the law.
In our next post, we will explore mistakes people make regarding their children and co-parenting.