At some point, one or both spouses may conclude that a marriage cannot continue. Filing for divorce becomes the necessary step. Since divorce proceedings are a legal process, seeking counsel from an attorney becomes a common initial step for a Pennsylvania resident. While experiences might differ among clients, many may reasonably expect similar topics to come up during the initial discussion.
The informational aspect of the initial consultation
The initial consultation affords the potential client a chance to meet with an attorney and make a hiring determination. The session may also serve as a fact-gathering endeavor for the lawyer. After all, an attorney needs to know who is seeking a divorce and why. Is the reason for the divorce adultery, irreconcilable differences, abuse or a combination of reasons? Such things could factor into how the attorney might proceed.
Of course, the attorney requires name and contact information, along with financial disclosures. Since a divorce may involve a distribution of assets, the attorney likely needs to learn about assets, debts, property and more. If a prenuptial agreement exists, the attorney might need to see the document immediately and perform a review.
Discussing the path forward
The client probably has specific goals in mind, such as seeking sole custody of a child or receiving a certain alimony amount. The attorney and the client need to agree with one another regarding goals, or else the relationship could prove problematic. An attorney may need to provide “bad news” to a client with unrealistic goals or expectations.
Discussions about payments may take place. The attorney could discuss payment arrangements and related options. The initial divorce consultation allows an attorney to gather information and provide insights to the client. The attorney-client relationship might benefit greatly when both agree on the goals and approach.