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Questions to ask during an initial consultation

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

I have an appointment with a divorce and custody lawyer in a couple of weeks. It's half an hour long so I need to make the most of it.

 

My primary reason for the consultation is to get a legal opinion of whether all the documentation I have would be enough to get full custody of our children. And I want to see if this lawyer is someone I might want to work with.

 

I've been so focused on the custody issue that I haven't even thought about other potentially big aspects of divorce, like finances.

 

Any suggestions about questions I should ask or things to discuss? Thanks!

 

 

post #2 of 11

Ask your lawyer about filing for financial restraints.  It is like taking a financial snapshot-- it can prevent either partner from dipping into investment assets or suddenly running up debt before the estate is settled.  In my state we were able to file the financial restraints ex parte-- immediately without all of the other separation/divorce issues being addressed yet.

post #3 of 11

Forgot to add that if you don't have copies of your past two tax returns, get them.  Whatever attorney you eventually hire will need them.  If you can estimate your income (which may include alimony) and STBX's income, you can probably find child support calculators online for your state.  Good luck!

post #4 of 11
Thread Starter 

The consultation went OK. According to her I don't have much of a case for denying split custody, which is what I was afraid of hearing. I am going to get a second opinion on this, however. I realize these things may vary from state to state, and a different lawyer might have a different take on the situation.

 

She gave me great advice about what to document; I think it's all in another thread here, too, but she suggested keeping a diary of who does what for the kids. At the end of each day jot down who did the doctor's visit, phone calls, school drop off, teacher conferences, arranged the playdate, etc..

 

I left feeling good however, that splitting is doable, that there is a potential end to the strain I've been living under for the past few years, that it won't cost as much as I thought it would, and that I probably won't get financially screwed over in the process. 

 

It is a little scary because it is starting to feel real, and to make it worse he was actually nice to me today. I guess that's why I've stayed until now when I've been unhappy for so long, not every day is bad, just most.

post #5 of 11

I started a journal yesterday and just jot down everything that happens during the course of the day. What we ate, what we did, who we saw, what child related calls I made etc.

 

At this point, it's out of our hands and in the hands of a judge. We will all be ok either way. Just have to make sure at the end of the day the kids know they are loved. ((hugs))

post #6 of 11

I hear you re the being nice, then doubting.  My ex kept me around for years by a few moments of niceness a month...I kept thinking if I did things better I could get more of them for me and the kiddos.  

 

Journaling is great...but the courts also like other evidence, like records from the doctor, etc.  

 

But bear in mind that a down-and-dirty custody battle is VERY expensive, totally exhausting, and at the end of the day mainly ends up hurting the kids in many cases. Nevertheless, second opinions are almost certainly worth it.....as are third ones orngbiggrin.gif  

post #7 of 11

So should I be calling the Ped and the Endocrine and reporting things like him not giving the proper insulin dosages etc?

 

I feel like a )I'm getting the wrapped up in the drama and 2) like I'm "telling" on him.

 

 

post #8 of 11

I'm not interested in a down and dirty battle. I am interested in fighting for the best interests of the kids. In this case, it means standing against for what HE is doing that's dirty. I am trying to maintain the higher road, but I worry about the "nice guy finishing last". :(

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by tccandlsccmom View Post

I hear you re the being nice, then doubting.  My ex kept me around for years by a few moments of niceness a month...I kept thinking if I did things better I could get more of them for me and the kiddos.  

 

Journaling is great...but the courts also like other evidence, like records from the doctor, etc.  

 

But bear in mind that a down-and-dirty custody battle is VERY expensive, totally exhausting, and at the end of the day mainly ends up hurting the kids in many cases. Nevertheless, second opinions are almost certainly worth it.....as are third ones orngbiggrin.gif  



 

post #9 of 11

I would call your son's doctor (whichever one is more appropriate) to ask what you should do in the case that your child doesn't get the meds he needs. I don't know how much leeway they build into the doses, so it could be dangerous and he might need medical attention should he miss too many doses in a row. You making sure that your child is safe and healthy regardless of what the other parent is doing is the most important thing here and is the thing that matters to the courts

post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by JaneDeerGirl View Post

So should I be calling the Ped and the Endocrine and reporting things like him not giving the proper insulin dosages etc?

 

I feel like a )I'm getting the wrapped up in the drama and 2) like I'm "telling" on him.

 

 


Yup, similar thing going on here. I feel like my diary is going to be the nail in the coffin of an amicable separation.

 

But it is necessary for your kids. A friend keeps reminding me of that in my case, and I'll do so for you. You need to do this to make sure your kids get the meds they need. Diabetes is not something to be taken lightly.

 

post #11 of 11

I agree with the other posters re the meds and getting the doctor in the loop.  As for "down and dirty" in terms of the fight, my lawyer told me a couple of months ago that unless I got serious about being an advocate for me as the parent who is in the best interest of my children, I could look forward to seeking them every other weekend until they went to college.  She reminded (and reminds) me that my ex is focused on nothing but winning, and being a good mother meant that I needed to get serious about "winning" too, if I believed that would be best for the kids.  Taking the high road will only work if the other side plays fair, apparently.  Breaks my heart.

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