Meeting with an attorney to discuss your divorce can be an intimidating experience. You may have a certain idea of what you want and how things will go, but it is important that you go into the meeting prepared, even for things you may not have expected. There may be parts of the divorce that you haven’t considered and may not understand what is important moving forward and what is not.
If there are children involved, you will also want to make sure to discuss with them the options and best methods for protecting your children throughout the process. Below is a list of questions that are helpful when meeting with an attorney. We also offer lists of questions to ask regarding the following situations as well:
–Questions to Ask About Your Lawyer & Their Experience
–Questions About the Divorce Process & Options
Child Custody & Child Support
How do you generally approach cases where there is high-conflict about custody?
Lawyers can have a very large say in the way that custody battles play out. It is important that your attorney can keep these situations under control.
Can I get a parenting coordinator?
A parenting coordinator is a trained individual to assist parents in high-conflict cases work together. Is this right for you?
Can we put together a plan until my child is 18 or do we have to revisit over the years?
Creating blanket agreements surrounding custody plans can be problematic, especially if the children are young. There are cases when this is appropriate, is yours one of them?
What if I plan to move out of state?
If moving out of state is a possibility, gathering information about custody now before you move is very important.
Do you have experience with emotionally abused children or power control issues?
Is your attorney comfortable working with areas of trauma such as emotional abuse? Power control issues can lead to issues with imbalance in decision making and make it difficult for parties to properly negotiate and reach a settlement. Can your lawyer help in situations like these?
Do you have experience with alcohol or substance abuse issues?
Does your lawyer have the desire or experience to help with these types of issues?
Do you have experience with physical abuse?
Florida has a clause in child custody that takes into consideration issues of domestic violence and the rights of time sharing. Knowledge of this is very important if you are affected by this.
Do you have experience with parental alienation?
If one parent is intentionally or even subconsciously alienating a child against the other parent this is a major issue. What is your approach to situations like these?
Do you have experience with mental disorders, diagnosed and undiagnosed?
Psychological impairments can impair a parent’s ability to effectively co-parent, which can affect a time sharing agreement.
How is child support determined?
There is a specific formula used in Florida to determine child support. It can be complicated so discussing this with your lawyer early on can give you an idea of how much support you can expect to recieve or pay.
My spouse lies about his income to the IRS?
Florida law does not take into consideration the same guidelines regarding income as the IRS and has its own income definition. Whatever is regular and recurring is considered a part of income.
How do we address health care, child care and other expenses?
If you have unique child care of health care concerns, you should discuss these with your attorney as soon as possible because these are often lost in the discussion when it comes to child support.
What happens if my spouse does not pay child support?
What can be done to ensure proper and timely payments?
Can we order for child support payments to be taken directly out of my spouse’s paycheck?
Often times this can be ordered. Discuss this option with your lawyer.
How is child support taxed?
Understanding how this is taxed can help you decide the best structure for your child support.
Meeting with your attorney for the first time can be an overwhelming experience as it is the first step in moving towards divorce. Making sure that you understand your rights, as well as the way that the divorce process will unfold with a particular attorney can be very comforting and help you to see the coming events more clearly.
If you are considering prepared to file for divorce and have questions about the process and how it will affect your family, Seff & Capizzi Law Group has the ability to assist with your situation. At Seff & Capizzi Law Group, we regularly assist clients and provide valuable information for those that need assistance in understanding how to approach this particular situation in their own lives.
If you need assistance with your divorce or child custody case, please call us at (954) 920-9220. We have over 40 years of experience and offer a free consultation. Click here for more information about our family law practice and how Seff & Capizzi can help.