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Monday, October 29, 2012

What To Bring To Your First Appointment


What should you bring to your first appointment to visit with a lawyer? Some of this can be sent for review in advance.
  1. Court Documents: If there has been a court filing, the client must bring previously filed documents. The last order entered by a court is an absolute must if the client is seeking post divorce advice. Certainly, if a client has recently been sued, the client must bring the suit and the summons served upon them and be prepared to say exactly when the papers were handed to them.
  2. Financial documents:
    (Note: the idea is to provide a basic understanding of the finances. Detail will be developed later)
    • Financial statements given by either party to lenders if you have them
    • basic financial statements prepared by either party
    • the latest pay stub for both parties if you have them
    • the latest statements for savings, stock and pension accounts if you have them (Note: the attorney will be interested in a basic idea of what was acquired during the marriage versus what was acquired before the marriage and what was received by gift during the marriage.)
    • Tax returns for the last three years if you have them
    • a social security earnings history if you have one
  3. Basic Timeline of Events: (Too much detail would not be useful in an initial appointment)
  4. Proof of Fault: such as telephone records, copies from Facebook, letters, recordings, pictures, cards, etc, pictures of bruises, doctor bills from abuse, etc.
  5. Payment: Oftentimes it is important to protect against the other party knowing about the appointment, so make arrangements to pay by a method the other spouse will not be able to detect, such as cash or cashiers check or checking account to which the other spouse does not have access.

19 comments:

Sherry Locke said...

Thanks for the very useful information here. I am going into an appointment with a counselor in family law in Olympia and I don't really know what to bring. I really appreciate this.

Professional Legal Network said...

Great to come this post. Nice to read this post. Great information. Great legal advice for First Appointment. I really like this post. Thanks for sharing this useful information.

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Louis Perkins said...

Really great post! First appointments are huge and it really winds up being important, especially in family law cases, that people are prepared for it. -Charlotte, NC

Toby Crane said...

The family law offices are the best by far. In Vancouver, they do their best to be better. It is amazing to me that the success comes no matter what.

Malcolm Durocher said...

Thanks for posting this! I've actually been looking for a good firm that does family law in Vancouver a lot, lately, and I hope that I'll find one soon.

Lorens Vasili said...

This post is very useful! These advices can prevent a lot a headache for people who do not really know what should they bring to the lawyer. Thank you very much for posting!

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Elijah Ali said...

My best friend needed afamily law attorney in Minneapolis when she went through her divorce. She found this great attorney and recommends this firm to everyone in need of representation.

Katy Sewell said...

Thank you so much for the helpful tips. I am going to a family law office in Vancouver later this week and had no idea what to bring to my first appointment.

Aaron Banks said...

I would love to talk to a family lawyer in New Westminster. I have been going through some hard times and I just need some reassurance this will be ok.

Lance Tankmen said...

The family law lawyers in Calgary told me something similar.

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Helen Evans said...

If you attempt to represent yourself in your own family court matter for a matter involving divorce, child support, child custody, placement, paternity or any other of various matters handled by family courts throughout the country, you should always "stick to the point".cheating husband nc.

bryan flake said...

Oh yes! your blog post is what I have been looking for. I am trying to gain sole custody of my children when my divorce is final. I am glad that you have all these tips outlined and organized neatly. I will be using them for sure. Thanks for sharing this information.

bryanflake1984| http://www.omb.com.au/family-law.html

VanRiperandNies said...

Nice guide on which documents are useful to bring to your first appointment.

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Nader hasan said...

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Claudia Rosenburg said...

These tips are really good. I never would have thought of them myself. I have a question about tip 5. Even if you paid in cash, wouldn't your spouse notice that you took a substantial amount of money out of the bank account? Or is the cost of a first appointment so small that they wouldn't notice the difference?
Claudia Rosenburg | http://www.borowieclaw.com

Gary Puntman said...

My friend is looking for a family lawyer. He has found a couple that he wants to meet with. Thanks for posting this. He has been trying to figure out what he should do when he meets with them for the first time.
Gary Puntman | http://www.fredmillerlawyer.com

Holly James said...

This is good to know for when I meet with my lawyer for the first time! I am going through my second divorce and I really want it to be less stressful than my last! Thankfully lawyers are here to help!
Holly James | http://www.tml-law.com/