What to Expect in Your First Meeting With An Orange County Divorce Attorney
Once you have exhausted all other avenues and decided that your only viable option is to get a divorce, it is only logical that you will want to meet a few divorce lawyers in Orange County. This initial meeting is all about the two of you getting to know one another, talking about the case in general and touching a bit on the financial implications. It is during this initial meeting that you get to decide whether or not a certain lawyer is the right divorce attorney for you.
In many cases, this meeting will be like a two-way job interview whereby both of you are interviewing one another for a position (you as a client and the lawyer as your chosen divorce attorney). Be cordial and open about the magnitude of the case. Only then can you get an honest understanding of just how well equipped the potential lawyer is to handle your case.
First meeting after hiring a divorce lawyer
Once you have gone to several meetings and have finally made your choice of a divorce attorney, it is time to hold your ‘real first meeting’. Although this will depend on the understanding reached between you and the chosen lawyer, most lawyers charge by the hour. So it is absolutely important that you come to this first meeting very prepared.
It is good practice to arrive a little early so that you can do away with any necessary paperwork before you get to see your lawyer. You may need basic information such as:
– Your first and last name as well as that of your soon to be ex-partner
– Both of your income information
– Yours and their social security numbers
– Information pertaining to the number of children you have with one another and so on.
What should you bring with you?
In some cases, you really do not need to bring anything. This often serves as the real strategy meeting where your lawyer delves deeper into your marital issues as well as your expectations. In some cases, however, the lawyer might ask you to bring a few things with you. These may include:
– Any and all paperwork filed regarding the divorce
– Tax returns from your marriage
– Bank statements
– Information about any real estate that you may have or share with your soon to be ex-spouse
– Any pertinent police reports, especially those that have to do with domestic violence
– Any sort of incriminating evidence that you may have
– Any restraining orders
– Bring all the relevant bills such as car repayments, credit card bills, student loans and mortgage repayments
You need to remember that ultimately, every divorce is about money. How much you get or pay to your spouse in the form of spousal support or alimony. That is why you need to be thorough with the financial details. Having all the necessary financial information ready for your lawyer to review will give both of you a head start on how you are going to deal with child support issues, spousal support claims and ultimately the division of debts and property between the two parties.
Although the first meeting may cover everything you need to know, you need to be prepared for subsequent meetings. Your lawyer will direct you on what to do as the process progresses. It is imperative that you hire a lawyer you can trust. One that will have your best interest at heart. Once you are convinced that you have found that lawyer, it is advisable to follow their instructions to the letter.