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Avoiding divorce mistakes: Getting a good attorney at the outset

A recent media opinion piece by a family mediator focuses on the dissolution experience, noting that it is easy to make material mistakes and be undermined in the divorce process in the absence of cultivating an initial focus and some rational planning decisions at the outset.

The upside, notes Michelle Rosen, is that most people -- even many who feel helpless and even overwhelmed as divorce matters seemingly consume them -- can go about the business of divorcing prudently and with an ordered thought process by simply following through on a few essentials.

Foremost among those is acting on the adage that, indeed, knowledge is power. Inversely stated, that means that, for most people, driving in the dark without lights is a recipe for quickly ending up derailed, in a ditch.

In other words: Get a seasoned and empathetic divorce attorney at the beginning of the process. As Rosen notes, “The more information you have regarding your rights and options, the better decisions you will be able to make.”

That applies to virtually every conceivable divorce consideration in Georgia and elsewhere, from child custody and support to property division and, perhaps, spousal maintenance. Enlisting the assistance and input of a proven divorce advocate on such matters is far from being merely advisable. Rather, it is essential for thoughtful decision making and a fair divorce outcome.

Another piece of advice: Don’t vent or throw tantrums in court. As Rosen notes: “[N]obody goes dancing out of court.” Again, having experienced legal counsel on hand will go far toward ensuring that drama and histrionics -- invariably self-defeating -- are avoided in the courtroom.

And, of course, an attorney well versed in matters related to asset identification and division can help ensure that a fair settlement is achieved in dissolution.

Source: Huffington Post, "The 5 worst mistakes people make during divorce," Michelle Rozen, July 24, 2013

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