Divorce: The First Steps

Almost everyone knows someone—a friend or a family member—who has been through a divorce.  Because divorce is often emotionally and financially trying, it is worth taking some time to learn about the legal process.  It may seem daunting, but doing so will empower you to make better-educated decisions about your individual situation. Remember:  Your situation is unique and requires an approach that fits you.

First Steps

1. Do I Need An Attorney? Answering this question requires understanding the complexity of your personal situation. Some things to consider:

  • How long have you been married?
  • Do you have children?
  • Have you acquired significant assets or debts?
  • What issues are most likely to be disputed?
  • How well are you getting along with your spouse through the divorce process?

If you have not been married long, do not have children and, any significant assets or debts and you are communicating well with your spouse, you may be able to use self-help resources to adequately protect your rights and confirm your agreements through the Judgment you will file with the court.  However, an attorney is probably necessary to assist you with for more complex or disputed matters, such as the sharing and/or support of children, shifting ownership of a home, the assignment of marital debts, and separating of bank accounts and retirement assets.

As the old saying goes, the devil is in the details. Without the attention of an experienced attorney, you may end up with an agreement which may not fit your needs, but causes continued problems between you and your ex-spouse.  CPLS brings years of experience to your personal situation to ensure that your agreements, court orders, and Judgment are well thought out, specific and enforceable.

Lastly, it is important to work with an attorney you feel comfortable with, who will educate you about how the divorce process works, and keep you informed about how divorce laws apply to your personal circumstances.  To assist you in your decision-making process, call us for an initial consultation.

2. How Do I Prepare for A Consultation with An Attorney?  To get the most out of your initial consultation, you should first take some time to prioritize your concerns and needs, and gather a strong base of information.  Examples of information that will be useful in this consultation are:

  • Copies of any papers already filed with the court;
  • The date and time of any future court dates;
  • The sources of income for you and your spouse;
  • A basic understanding of the assets and debts that you have acquired during marriage;
  • A list of the issues you believe will be most difficult for you and your spouse to resolve.

This kind of information, combined with CPLS knowledge of the legal process and the family law courts, will help make your initial consultation productive and provide an opportunity to discuss alternatives uniquely available to you.

To schedule your consultation, contact CPLS at 407-647-7887 or 877-647-7887.  Appointments may be conducted in person in Orlando; or, by telephone for clients outside of Orlando, Florida.