If you are either contemplating filing for divorce or if you or your spouse have already filed for divorce, it is very important that you understand the standards for decision-making that the court will employ, the procedures and the rules of evidence involved. Attorney Bryan S. Seidl has dedicated a substantial part of his practice to assisting clients with their divorce and post-divorce issues. Every divorce is different from the next, each involving different sets of facts and issues to resolve.
Because the facts and circumstances involving each divorce can vary from one extreme to the next, the cost of a divorce can also be different in each case. Attorney Bryan S. Seidl of Seidl Law Offices, LLC, has years of experience in successfully helping clients navigate the often turbulent processes of divorce law and post-divorce law, and the procedures necessary to finalize the divorce, while keeping his clients’ costs and fees at a reasonable level. In an effort to help save his clients money in attorneys’ fees, Mr. Seidl advises all of his divorce clients in the following regards:
(1) “Don’t spend $2,000 in attorney fees fighting over a $20 toaster oven.” The Court and the law expect that you and your spouse be willing to compromise (to a reasonable degree), to be reasonable and respectful in your communications with each other, to be respectful to all parties involved, and that you make a good faith effort to settle differences. While you are certainly not expected to sacrifice your rights, it is not financially prudent to let your emotions get the better of you. Mr. Seidl has the experience to advise you with regard to which battles are worth fighting for and which battles are not worth fighting.
(2) “Be as organized and active in your case as possible.” Within the confines of the Attorney-Client relationship, there are certain tasks that only Mr. Seidl can do based on his experience, training and education in the law, and there will be certain tasks that both Mr. Seidl and/or YOU can accomplish (such as gathering information and documents necessary for trial). Mr. Seidl gives you every opportunity, to complete the tasks that either you or Attorney Seidl can perform in an effort to save you money in attorney fees. The more organized you are with regard to the information you need to provide, the less time Mr. Seidl has to spend organizing your file and understanding the facts and circumstances of your case so that he can effectively communicate the facts to opposing counsel and the court, and the amount of attorney fees you will need to pay will, in turn, be reduced.
From the moment that a petition for divorce is filed, there are several issues that need to be resolved in order for the court to give you a final divorce judgment. These issues may include, but are not limited to: legal custody and physical placement of children; visitation; child support; spousal support or maintenance (formerly known as “alimony”), the division of marital assets and marital debts, possibly domestic violence issues, and possibly other issues depending on the facts and circumstances. If the you and your spouse can agree on all issues that need to be resolved, you may submit divorce papers to the Judge or Family Court Commissioner, in the form of a “Marital Settlement Agreement” for the Court’s review and possible approval. If the Court finds that the Marital Settlement Agreement is fair and just for all parties concerned and is in the children’s best interests, the Judge will adopt the Marital Settlement Agreement and make it a part of the Judgment of Divorce.
If the court approves a Marital Settlement Agreement made between you and your spouse, later modifications, depending on the issue, can become difficult and expensive. That’s why it is important, even if you and your spouse are in agreement, to hire an attorney to prepare and review your Marital Settlement Agreement. Without such counsel, mistakes can be made that may impact you and/or your children for years to come.
If the parties are unable to resolve one or more of the issues needing resolution, the parties must proceed to a contested divorce trial and put into evidence the facts that support their position on those issues. The court will then make a decision concerning all of the contested issues between you and your spouse. Generally, through the litigation process, there may be a need for the parties and their attorneys to engage in what is referred to as the “discovery process.” The purpose of the discovery process, if necessary, is to obtain and “discover” all of the evidence and the testimony that your spouse and his/her counsel will use and submit to the court to support their arguments. It may, again only if necessary, involve Requests to Admit, Requests for Production of Documents, Interrogatories, and/or depositions of parties, third-party witnesses and experts. For more information about the discovery process, please visit our FAQ page or call Mr. Seidl at (715) 365-9008 or (715) 360-9008.
If you cannot come to an agreement on all issues needing resolution, you and your spouse will be required to testify in court and produce relevant documentary evidence concerning the issues that you and your spouse cannot agree on. After hearing the testimony, receiving the evidence and hearing arguments from the parties or their attorneys, the presiding Judge will make a ruling on each of the contested issues. Litigation over disputed or contested matters is most often time consuming and requires a solid knowledge of Wisconsin divorce law. For this reason, it is important to have the assistance of an experienced, knowledgeable and skilled divorce attorney to ensure that your rights are protected.
Attorney Bryan S. Seidl of Seidl Law Offices, LLC, is experienced, knowledgeable and skilled in family law matters, and will provide you with the diligent, zealous and individualized representation and the attention that you deserve. Mr. Seidl will work hard towards resolving the many issues that need resolving in your divorce or post-divorce matter, while keeping your rights and best interests at the forefront of the litigation process and at the same time making sure that you are kept timely informed and that you understand the process and your options, all at a reasonable cost to you.
For more information, contact us at 715-365-9008 or 715-360-9008. Your first phone call is FREE! Help is just a phone call away.