How We Work
As a divorce lawyer, I am proactive, not re-active, in representing you and your interests. Your first meeting with me is a Case Assessment Session (sm). Prior to this Session, I will be as prepared as you will allow me to be by providing me information even before our Session so I can intelligently advice you concerning your case.
At the end of the Case Evaluation Session, you have the opportunity to hire me to help you resolve your family legal issues. See this page for more information on the Case Assessment Session.
Your case is individual, but I have found that the general approach described below is applicable to all cases to ensure that I can help you resolve your legal issues in a way that works for you.
My Approach to Family Cases
By their very nature, family matters are delicate. While I subscribe to the adage that “the best defense is a good offense” this approach to a family case does not necessarily mean an all-out war–after all, long after your case is over, you may still be dealing with the other party, especially if you have children.
I advise, represent, litigate and negotiate on your behalf. What this means to you is that I give you legal advice for your divorce or other family case based on the status of the law and the individual circumstances of your case at the time your case comes into my office; and as the case progresses since things can sometimes change unexpectedly in family cases.
It also means I will represent and litigate your family matter in a proactive manner, taking the initiative whenever possible as to the case generally and as to individual issues in particular.
At some point in your case, negotiating a solution may make more sense than continued divorce litigation–sometimes this makes sense from the very beginning. If so, I will let you know so you can make an informed decision whether you wish to explore this route.
As part of a proactive approach, I formulate a strategy or plan with you for the case within the framework of the law and your facts. The strategy of a case can change as it moves through the legal system for any number of reasons, including changes in the law which affect your case, the dynamics between you and your spouse (or other party if your case is a paternity case) and/or the style and approach of the attorney representing your spouse or other party.
None of the above means I will make decisions for you. You will ultimately have control of, and be responsible for, decisions at every step of the case that will impact the ultimate outcome of your case. I will give you advice as to possible consequences of any decision you propose to make, but will never make the decision for you.
The bottom line is that litigating the case–or any individual issue in the case–is strictly your choice given the advice I provide to you. I will litigate any and all issues that you decide to litigate within the framework of current law and your facts, and the advice I have provided to you.
Please note, however, that I will not litigate for the sake of litigation–meaning, when I think there is no legal basis for litigating a particular issue, I will let you know so you can decide what your next step should be—including whether that next step should be to hire someone else.
No attorney can guarantee you a particular result in any case. The best we lawyers can do is give you an opinion as to what may be a likely outcome or outcomes–based on your specific factual situation and existing statutory and case law at the time of your Case Assessment Session– understanding that this is merely an opinion at the time it is rendered and not a guarantee as to outcome.
In addition to the statutory and case law, the outcome of your case will depend on what you can prove at the time of a trial in your case. Not every allegation you may want to make in a court document may be provable under the rules of evidence applicable to court proceedings; part of representing you involves discussing the kind of proof you need to have and present to the court.
The outcome of your case will depend on the law, what you can prove in court, what the other party proves in court, and the willingness of both of you to litigate the case. Keeping your options open means keeping an open mind to available possibilities to resolve your case, including considering mediating the case at any stage, not just prior to trial.
Fees in Family Cases
Whenever possible I try to offer flat fees services for divorce and other family cases. For more information visit Attorney Fees in Florida Divorce and Paternity Cases and read this article about Flat Fees in a Contested Divorce.
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