Although cyberspace is littered with information about do-it-yourself or online divorces, not all marriage dissolutions are simple enough to be handled that way. Disagreements over money, property and parenting issues often arise, and a lawyer practicing exclusively in the area of family law is best able to help in the resolution. Lawyers do charge fees for their services, but there are advantages to having an attorney that make the expense well worthwhile.
Here are five ways that a divorce lawyer can provide invaluable assistance:
- Explain the divorce laws — Kansas, like every state, has its own laws governing divorce, which include eligibility rules and procedural requirements. A family law attorney can help you understand the difference between a divorce based on fault rather than no-fault grounds and how this may affect division of marital assets. Another option that may serve your particular situation is a legal separation. Or, you may not need a divorce or separation because the marriage was invalid in the first place.
- Provide an objective viewpoint — Divorce can be one of the most stressful times in your life. You probably won’t be as clear-headed as is needed for making important decisions. People in this situation often have their judgment clouded by emotions like anxiety, anger and resentment. An experienced divorce lawyer can analyze your circumstances calmly and dispassionately and help you map out a plan for resolving your case without undue conflict, delay, and expense.
- Determine a fair division of assets — Kansas applies the rule of equitable distribution in divorce, which means the court divides marital property according to what is deemed fair and just under the circumstances. The process takes into account multiple factors, such as contributions made by both spouses to the couple’s financial status. The calculation is complex and can involve many variables, such as the extent to which separately owned property is included. A skilled divorce attorney will work vigilantly to protect your interests in developing a fair property settlement.
- Craft a workable child custody and visitation plan — In Kansas, the law is focused on “best interests” of the children. Joint physical custody does not always mean equal. There may be several reasons why a court will grant one parent more or less time with the child. A skilled divorce lawyer can make out a detailed and supportable case for a custody and visitation plan that is favorable to you.
- Serve as an advocate — You need a lawyer to negotiate effectively on your behalf and, if necessary, to represent you in court. This includes making and evaluating settlement offers, which can be crucial to avoiding litigation that may not serve your interests. An experienced divorce lawyer can also anticipate and spot legal issues that may arise unexpectedly.
At the Henry Law Firm, P.A. in Overland Park, Kansas, we are experienced in providing effective and compassionate assistance to individuals seeking to dissolve their marriages. Call us at 913-381-5020 or contact us online to schedule your consultation.