Why do I need to hire a divorce lawyer?

Going through a divorce is a life changing event. It is an uncertain and scary time. During the divorce, you will make very important decisions that will affect the rest of your life.

The assets you have acquired during the marriage need to be identified, valued and distributed. Your marital lifestyle will need to be defined.  This is so that an effort can be made to insure it is reasonably maintained. If you have children, custody and parenting time issues, child support and college contribution are primary considerations.

Because of these ultra-important issues, as well as the emotional impact and the complexities of the divorce process, it is important to have a lawyer. Not just any lawyer. You should have a lawyer who specializes in divorce law with whom you can talk to and trust. You should do some soul searching to determine what it is you want to accomplish from the divorce.  The right lawyer will help you reach your goals.

Most divorce cases eventually settle. It has been estimated that 96% – 97% of all divorce cases settle. Thus, it is really a matter of when will your case settle, not if your case will settle. You need to find a lawyer who will help navigate and negotiate a settlement that is in your best interest. Each settlement should be a fair compromise of all issues. By that, I mean both parties will be called upon to compromise – to give up something to get something in return. How quickly your case settles is largely a function of you, your spouse and the attorneys. Many cases can settle in a matter of weeks or months. Contested cases can take years to complete.


A wonderful option in helping a client reach a fair resolution of their divorce is mediation. Mediation is a process whereby the parties negotiate, through an independent mediator, the terms of their divorce. Even when mediating, however, it is crucial to retain your own lawyer to assist you through the mediation process. I tell my clients that I must talk to them before and after any mediation session so that I am aware of what is being negotiated at the mediation session in order to provide feedback and suggestions. It is the client’s decision as to whether or not they want to participate in mediation.

There are many advantages to mediation. First, it is cost-effective. Second, it generally takes less time to resolve your case through mediation than litigation. Most importantly, though, is that you control the outcome of the case and you actively participate in the resolution of your own divorce.

Financial Records

A divorce is handled either through mediation or litigation.  Regardless, it is your attorney’s job and goal to assist you in the dissolution of your marriage. It is crucial to gather all financial records such as tax returns from the past 3 years, all brokerage account statements, stock information and stock option grants. A wonderful tool for this information is through the employer manual. It is important to obtain a copy of that document. Credit card statements and bank records are also keys to figuring out and analyzing income and spending.

The best divorce is an informed divorce.  A successful divorce happens when the terms are reached through compromises made by the clients. When you are part of the process and responsible for the settlement, you will feel better about the terms and will be able to take that first step into a happy post-divorce life.

Please contact me at if you have questions about this post or any other family law matter.

Back to Blog

Related Posts

What Happens When an Ex-Spouse Breaks the Marital Settlement Agreement?

In 2020, it was estimated that 39% of marriages ended in divorce. If you are someone who went through divorce, you may be struggling with a spouse who fails to abide by your marital settlement agreement. They may fail to make payments for alimony, for example, or they may fail to pay their part of…

Read More
The Dangers of Being Too Nice in a Divorce

You Can Be Too Nice in a Divorce Ninety-five plus percent of all divorce cases will settle without a trial. However, that does not necessarily mean that each spouse ends up with a deal that gives them everything they want. There is such a thing as being too nice when you settle your case and…

Read More
Divorce Mediation and Arbitration Explained

The Differences Between Divorce Mediation and Arbitration In the United States, only about 5% or less of divorce cases will ultimately go to a hearing. Most divorcing couples will find some way to settle their case with an agreement. Mediation and arbitration are two ways to resolve a divorce, and they are different in nature….

Read More
How the Best Interests Test Works

The Best Interests of the Child Test in New Jersey The concept of best interests of the children actually comes from a United Nations Convention, and it’s applied in all states. Beyond that, many people don’t know what it means. Below is an explanation of the test and how it is used in New Jersey…

Read More
Are Divorces Actually Becoming More Civil Because of the Pandemic?

Is the Pandemic Changing the Way That People Divorce? Only about 2-3 % of divorce cases end up going to trial. However, even among the 92-98% that avoid a court hearing, there is often rancor and bitterness that plague the relationship between the spouses. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused at least some change that…

Read More
Main Dispute in a Divorce is Often Custody and Parenting Time
Custody and Parenting Time Often in a divorce, the main area in dispute is custody and parenting time of a child.  Litigants can spend months of their lives and thousands of dollars fighting over their child. There are two different types of custody - legal custody and residential custody.  With regard to legal custody, there... Read More
Call Now ButtonCall Us