People are often concerned about what happens in family court, as it can be an overwhelming and scary world. Divorce affects not only you as an individual, but your entire family, including your children. For that reason, it may be to your benefit to speak to a family law attorney about the ways that you might be able to avoid family court, such as engaging in mediation prior to filing for divorce. Here are some reasons why you may want to avoid family court.
1. It’s very difficult to navigate the Family Court system without an attorney.
It’s very common for people to come in for an initial consultation after they have already looked into filing a complaint for divorce on their own. It’s very difficult to navigate the Family Court system without an attorney. There are many, many court rules that you need to be aware of and the court staff is not permitted to give you legal advice. In many instances that means that they will give you the paperwork that you need to complete whatever aspect of the divorce you are asking about, but will not assist further. This may result in your motions being denied for procedural issues that you were not aware of, such as not attaching a prior order that you are seeking to enforce. If that happens, you would need to re-file the motion, wasting precious time and money. An attorney who specializes in family law, such as the attorneys at DeTorres & DeGeorge, are experts when it comes to the family court system. They will be able to more effectively advocate on your behalf and in accordance with the court rules in order to get you the relief that you need.
2. It may increase your counsel fees.
Once you file a complaint for divorce, you are on the court’s schedule and must comply with various dates to remain on track. This may result in increased counsel fees in order to ensure that you are compliant. For example, in the event that you have been unable to settle your case, you will be required to attend intensive settlement conferences which essentially require a full day court appearance. This can be very costly. An alternative to this would be to ask your attorney to arrange a four way conference with your spouse and their attorney, or perhaps attend mediation prior to filing a complaint. It is very common for people to resolve their entire case prior to filing a complaint for divorce. Doing so may allow you to avoid some of the mandatory court appearances that would otherwise be necessary resulting in a savings in counsel fees.
3. You want to make your own decisions for your family.
Your divorce impacts not only your life, but the lives of all of the members of your family. While you may be hurt or angry at your spouse, it’s important to keep the best interests of your children at the forefront of your mind. There is a family law case that references that it is better for clients to make their own decisions about what’s best for their children rather than “the stranger in the black robe.” By reaching a settlement agreement that you and your spouse can both live with, it allows you to dictate your own lives rather than leaving aspects of your life in the hands of a judge who knows nothing about you or your family.
If you are considering a divorce, contact the attorneys at DeTorres & DeGeorge today to schedule a consultation.