Why you should talk to an attorney before filing divorce forms
Most people aren’t comfortable reading complex documents. This is normal. So why would it be different when going through a divorce? You may think you have the ability to complete your divorce forms, and maybe you do, but remember that they are legal, binding contracts. Plus, simply ‘starting’ the divorce process is a long way from navigating the case through to final Decree and Judgment. It usually takes months, sometimes years, to procure a legally binding divorce.
Family law is far more intricate than people imagine. Each case is unique, and final document wording is important. Even if you plan to prepare your divorce forms yourself, it’s highly beneficial to have an attorney look them over before you file them. This can keep things from becoming overly confusing. No one understands how to navigate the legal system like a licensed, experienced family law attorney.
What Could Happen if You Filed Divorce Forms on Your Own?
Divorce is stressful enough without having to worry about the wording on a form. Imagine sitting down after a long day at work and trying to understand the legal jargon of divorce forms. This can quickly leave you feeling frustrated and overwhelmed. In Arizona, there are no less than 7 separately mandated legal pleading forms that must be 100% correct when filed before the Court will accept your filing and kick off your case.
So let us just say, the next day you file your paperwork. Upon returning home, you look at your copies of the divorce forms only to realize you may not have been specific enough about your parenting plan. You discussed custody for regular weeks but forgot to address holidays. Who gets the kids over Thanksgiving? Or Christmas or Fourth of July each year?
After thinking about this longer, you may realize you don’t know how to proceed. You want to tell the courts that you left out details, but you don’t know what form to file. Panic sets in. What will it cost you to amend your mistake?
Talk to an Attorney
Situations like these can be avoided if you talk to an attorney before you file divorce forms. They can help point out areas that need more detail or were forgotten.
Trying to fill out a one-size-fits-all form on your own can and will be difficult. A legal professional can help you with complicated situations. For example, do you have a right to any of your spouse’s business operations or stock? What if you helped run the business for years, but aren’t on the legal documents?
Attorneys navigate the legal system day in and day out. They are familiar with reasonable requests and how to respond to unreasonable demands. Working with an attorney to file your divorce forms means they can:
- Give you a realistic view of what you can request
- Remember everything you need to address
- Prevent costly mistakes
- Understand complex situations
- File all of the important divorce forms
- Provide you with alternative options, such as collaborative divorce
Find an Attorney to Help Your Unique Case
It can be difficult it to resolve divorce issues without professional assistance. Attorneys are there to help you understand the situation and navigate the system. If you’re ready to enlist help with your divorce forms, contact the professionals at Best Legal Choices.
Licensed for over 21 years in Arizona, Nevada and California, Craig Cherney is a different kind of attorney. He truly listens and solves problems rather than merely identify risks.