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Issues To Discuss With Your Divorce Attorney



In the midst of a divorce situation, struggling couples' emotions are charged, nerves are raw, finances are stretched, and it is possible (if not probable) to forget key questions and concerns for discussion with your counsel. A checklist is advisable for these very reasons. After all, you are paying your divorce counsel good money for legal advice, so you want to be able to address all of the matters on your mind and obtain the information you seek in your appointments with counsel.

Issues To Consider

The following issues are presented for your consideration in preparing for consultation with your divorce counsel:

Timelines:

Children Issues:

  • Child support (temporary and final);
  • Child custody (legal and physical);
  • Visitation of other parent;
  • Visitation of grandparents;
  • Visitation with stepchildren, if any;
  • Health insurance;
  • Dental insurance;
  • Uninsured health care costs;
  • College costs and expenses;
  • Private education costs and expenses, if any;
  • Activity fees and expenses (sports, lessons, hobbies, etc.);
  • Residence in marital home;
  • Life insurance policy beneficiaries;
  • Income tax issues (claiming dependents);
  • Religious/moral upbringing; and
  • Discipline.

Property Issues:

  • Equity in home;
  • Real property (second homes, vacation properties, investment properties, etc.);
  • Furniture;
  • Electronics;
  • Art/decor;
  • Memorabilia;
  • Wedding gifts;
  • Business holdings;
  • Professional practices, degrees and licenses;
  • Retirement pensions, IRAs and 401(k) plans;
  • Cars;
  • Boats;
  • Planes;
  • Recreational vehicles and equipment;
  • Personal property;
  • Savings and checking accounts;
  • Stocks, bonds and mutual funds;
  • Other assets (undisclosed/hidden);
  • Compensation for homemaking and child-rearing services provided; and
  • Debts and liabilities.

Support Issues:

  • Entitlement to it;
  • Calculations for amount;
  • Duration; and
  • COBRA continued health care coverage.

Fees And Costs:

  • Attorneys' fees and costs; and
  • Court costs and filing fees.

Miscellaneous Issues:

  • Domestic violence or abuse (physical, mental, emotional, financial, etc.);
  • Child abuse;
  • Violence toward others, family members, etc.;
  • Protective orders/restraining orders;
  • Kidnapping concerns;
  • Maiden name restored;
  • Non-financial support after divorce, counseling, etc.;
  • Claim for attorneys' fees and costs; and
  • Custody of pets.