Hiring an Attorney Should NOT Be the First Step You Take in Divorce

As divorce coaches and family law consultants, we encourage clients to work with a licensed family law attorney to provide legal counsel and advice for their case. Attorneys’ expertise and value are to understand how to interpret and apply family law.

But how do you feel, as divorce may become or has already become a reality for you? However divorce finds its way into your life, the process is stressful, confusing, and emotionally complex. Having a team to help you wade through this intense process, avoiding pitfalls along the way can help you make informed decisions with managed attorneys’ fees and less emotional scarring. 

In all styles of divorce, the preparatory phase is overwhelming, stressful, time-consuming. Often, this is when the idea of divorce is still new and emotions are intense. The preparatory phase is not just about managing documents and details, but should be about managing your reactions and emotions, and clarifying what you want and need. While attorneys are experts at the law, most are not well-equipped to provide emotional support to their clients.

Much of the preparatory work in dissolution focuses on getting organized, gathering documents and managing details, to determine a starting point and strategy for negotiations. Because attorneys bill such a high rate ($350 to $400 per hour), the hours and fees for prep work add up quickly. We support our clients to do this work in advance / in conjunction with their attorney, to manage legal fees.

In cases that are low-drama, uncontested, and seemingly simple, we encourage couples to collaborate with our team to mediate the terms. Following this process, we provide legal solutions to ensure that the agreements protect the needs of both parties. If your divorce case is complex or contested, a legal professional will be required. If there is a lack of transparency, toxicity, safety concerns, or if your spouse has retained counsel, it is wise to find an attorney.

Finding the right attorney for your case is essential. We take the time to understand your needs and recommend the best legal solution for you. Our clients work with our team in advance and in conjunction with a family law attorney, which limits the attorney’s scope and fees. Our efficient process uses best practices to save clients money, time, and emotional energy while ensuring a more intentional, strategic outcome for their family. 

Having your emotions ‘in check’ is a crucial part of strategic negotiation and wise decision-making, as is having facts about your rights and managing your expectations. The compounding pressures of this stressful process can force you into ‘fight or flight mode’, causing you to make hasty, irrational decisions. A therapist is an expert at helping their patients explore their emotions, but a therapist is not trained in the process of divorce.

The services offered by Divorce Strategies Northwest are an essential part of an intentional, strategic, cost-effective approach to divorce. We work to help you manage your emotions and make informed choices, while helping you organize, plan, and prepare for the legal phase of divorce. Our team is not a replacement for a therapist nor an attorney; we augment these professionals by providing support that attorneys do not, and offering informed support and client education that therapists cannot.

Ten reasons why hiring an attorney should not be the first step you should take, in whatever stage of divorce are:

  1. Attorneys are expensive ($350-$450+ per hour), billed to clients in tenths of an hour.
  2. Attorneys require a retainer to begin any work, typically between $6,000 – $10,000.
  3. Attorneys charge their hourly rate for a consultation which impedes the opportunity to interview several, in search of the right fit.
  4. Attorneys are an expensive solution for the preparatory phase, which can be overwhelming in volume and detail.
  5. Attorneys do not hand-hold their clients, nor provide emotional support. If they do, this extra time will increase your legal fees.
  6. Attorneys do not take the time to discuss options and review various scenarios of your case. If they do, this extra time will increase your legal fees.
  7. Attorneys work best and most effectively with clients who have their emotions in check, have realistic expectations, and who can make logical, rational decisions.
  8. Attorneys cannot take the time to get to know you and understand your goals, fears, and dreams. If they do, this extra time will increase your legal fees.
  9. Attorneys are skilled in applying the law, not necessarily in pursuing strategic, creative solutions for your dissolution case.
  10. Attorneys do not provide divorce coaching, financial coaching, nor help you develop a custom parenting plan designed specifically for your family’s needs.

Informed decision-making, experienced support and carefully picking your battles are all essential parts of a managed, healthy divorce process. Our team’s discreet, strategic support offers an intentional, personalized outcome for you and your family. Our clients survive dissolution with clarity, efficiency and effective support.

Your Trusted Partner

Whether you’re contemplating a divorce, have already started the process, or are far into the proceedings, do you wish you had someone to share with you the inside scoop on how to save money, time and emotional energy on your divorce?

Our team is available for a complimentary consultation to discuss the many scenarios, options and implications of separation or divorce, via telephone or videoconference during this time. Feel free to get in touch with us; we are here for you!

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