Divorce is tough and the thought of discussing deeply personal matters with a lawyer is likely to be daunting. However, your attorney can only advocate for you if they have all the necessary information. This means you need to be candid and you need to prepare for your first meeting. The more information you can share, the more likely it is that your attorney will be able to get you the outcomes you desire. Let’s look at some of the things you should be prepared to discuss at your first consultation with an Albany divorce attorney.
The Reason You’re Getting A Divorce
Whether you’re the one who decided to end the marriage or your spouse served you with papers, you need to tell your attorney why the relationship deteriorated. While you can seek a divorce in Georgia on the basis of irreconcilable differences, you should mention if abuse, adultery or abandonment factored into the decision to get a divorce. This could influence the advice your attorney gives you regarding things like child custody and property division.
Whether you were the victim or the perpetrator of abuse, you need to mention it so your lawyer doesn’t get blindsided later. Similarly, you should disclose if you cheated on your spouse or they cheated on you. This will be uncomfortable to talk about, but it will ensure your attorney can adequately represent you. It is especially important to disclose abuse since you may need to get a protection order for you and your children. Your attorney can assist with this.
The Outcome You Want
Your attorney’s job is to do everything they can to get you your desired outcome. This means you need to be specific about what you want regarding child custody and visitation, alimony, and asset division. Instead of just saying you want your fair share, go into as much detail as possible. You may not get everything you want but you’ll stand a better chance when you’re specific.
The Questions You Have
You’ll likely have lots of questions about divorce – some major and some minor. More are likely to arise as you talk to your Albany divorce lawyer. Therefore, you should make a list ahead of the first consultation and every subsequent meeting. This ensures that you remember to ask them. Divorce is a major life event so you should make sure you have all the information you need. Well-meaning friends and relatives will tell you lots of things but you won’t know if the information is accurate or applicable to your situation. Divorce attorneys will give you timely, relevant, and personalized advice.
Details of Your Marriage
You’ll need to give your lawyer lots of details about your marriage. Discuss when you got married and whether you signed a prenuptial agreement. Share details concerning when you and your spouse separated and whether you’re still living in the same household even though you’re no longer together. If there are photos, audio or video recordings or correspondence to support any of your claims, be sure to take them to the meeting.
Issues Relating to Children and Property
These are often two of the most contentious issues in a divorce. If you and your spouse share children, your divorce will affect them. You and your attorney need to discuss your ideal situation regarding custody, visitation, and child support. Similarly, if you have property that you believe should be considered non-marital, you should tell your lawyer about it as soon as possible. It can take a while to gather documents relating to property ownership so you should begin this process early.
Financial and Legal Issues
Be prepared to provide your attorney with details of the assets and liabilities you and your spouse hold. You should also be able to state how much you make each month and how much you spend on housing, transportation, utilities, and other expenses. If you have children, you should also factor in the money you spend on them. If you have pending lawsuits, judgments against you or any other outstanding legal issues, provide your attorney with the relevant documentation. While this may seem excessive, your lawyer needs to be able to see the whole picture.
Contact Joe Durham Jr. P.C. Today to Get Expert Legal Advice
Let our divorce lawyers in Albany, GA help you get through this difficult time in your life. Call us today to book a consultation or ask questions about the information you need to gather. We will provide you with sound legal advice and representation and help you to get the best outcome possible.