How To Prepare For Your Initial Divorce Lawyer Consultation

Posted on: 17 May 2016

Once you and your spouse have decided that you want to get a divorce, it's best to consult a specialist divorce lawyer to discuss how to proceed.  This is especially important if your financial situation is complicated or if you have children.  In order to get the most from your initial consultation with a divorce lawyer, it's important to be properly prepared.  Here are some top tips on how to make sure you arrive for your meeting well-prepared.

What to take with you

If your spouse has already discussed divorce with their own legal advisor, you might have received some communication from them.  In this case, remember to bring any letters or other documents that you've received.  This allows your lawyer to immediately take control of the situation for you.

If you are the party initiating divorce proceedings, all you need to take with you are some identification documents.  Your divorce lawyer will specify what forms of ID are acceptable prior to the meeting, but items such as a current passport, photo driving licence, bank statements, or utility bills showing your full name and address are usually acceptable.

Who to take with you

The break-up of a marriage can be an extremely stressful and worrying time and you shouldn't feel that you have to face things alone.  It often helps to bring a supportive family member or close friend with you when you attend your initial consultation with a divorce lawyer.  It's a good idea to ask them to make notes of what is discussed for you to refer to later, as you might not remember everything you talked about, especially if you're feeling nervous or stressed.

What to ask your divorce lawyer

A protracted divorce can be expensive as well as stressful and for this reason you probably want to know how long the whole process will take.  If your situation is complicated or it's likely that your spouse will contest or dispute matters pertaining to child custody or financial settlements, things could take time to sort out.  Your divorce lawyer should be able to give you a rough estimate of timescales once you've had your initial discussion, so remember to ask about this.

Another important consideration is cost.  Before you actually proceed to instruct a divorce lawyer, be sure to enquire as to their fees.  Once they have an understanding of your situation, a good divorce lawyer should be able to provide you with an estimate of what their final fees will be.  Ask if you can pay the bills as the case progresses, thus spreading the cost, rather than having to find one lump sum at the conclusion of the divorce.

In conclusion

Your initial consultation with a divorce lawyer can be made much less stressful if you're properly prepared.  Take with you any documents that you've received from your spouse's solicitor, remember your ID, and take a friend with you for moral support.