How Should I Prepare for the First Meeting with My Divorce Attorney?
The first meeting with your attorney is similar to an interview in many ways. Both of you will be assessing each other with the ultimate aim of determining whether to take the case. The following are some things you can expect from this important initial meeting.
Setting a Tone
Lawyers are people, just as yourself. Though you may want to get right down to business and discuss matters pertinent to your divorce, it is important from the outset for you, the client, and your attorney to get acquainted. Assuming this attorney takes your case, the two of you will be spending a great deal of time together preparing for that all-important day in court. As such, your attorney will be trying to set your mind at ease as well as explain in basic terms how the divorce process works.
Your attorney will need to know as much about your case as possible. Expect to be asked many questions about your finances, income, assets, debts, and expenses. When you made the appointment you likely were asked to prepare as complete a list as possible of all assets and debts, along with bank account balances, retirement plans, IRAs, percentage of ownership in a business, etc. Your prospective attorney will then be able to review this with you to determine which assets might cause contention during any negotiations to divide them. If certain assets were acquired prior to the marriage by one party, this is important to point out to your attorney, as are any that were given solely to one party during the marriage.
Though Texas is a community property state, the matter of division of assets is not as simple as merely dividing them down the middle. Along with assets, any debts acquired during the marriage need to be discussed with your attorney. Indeed, it is often the case that dividing debts proves to be as contentious an issue as division of assets during a divorce.
During your first meeting, you and your attorney should also discuss important information about any children from the marriage. Among the matters that will be pertinent to child custody and support arrangements are:
- Ages of minor children
- Extracurricular activities
- Whether one child has special needs
- Which parent takes the children to/from activities, doctor and dentist appointments, etc.
Making That Important Decision
The ultimate purpose of the first interview is to decide whether you feel that this attorney is best suited to represent you. Keep in mind that the attorney will also be deciding whether to take your case. It is very important that you hire College Station divorce lawyers who are experienced, and who you feel you will be able to work with for an extended period of time. Call Peterson Law Group today to arrange a consultation at 979-703-7014 or 936-337-4681.