Many times in my practice, once I am familiar with all the facts of a case (including both my client’s version and the version of my client’s spouse) I can predict a range of outcomes that’s normally very accurate. Despite this, it can be difficult to settle a divorce case, raising legal fees tremendously and causing both parties a lot of stress. Here are 8 of the reasons why this happens.
1. The other divorce lawyer. I do agree with the common perception that lawyers can make things more difficult than need be. The reasons for this are somewhat complex. Some lawyers are overly aggressive. This isn’t solely the lawyer’s fault – clients going through a divorce often want their lawyer to be aggressive. Aggression isn’t the only problem – an inexperienced lawyer may not be reasonable simply because they don’t know what a local judge may decide.
2. Unreasonable clients. One thing about being a divorce lawyer is that even though you’ve dealt with a situation many times before, a client knows more about it because a friend of a friend said something. Whether you like what the law has to say or not, for most middle-class couples in fairly average situations, the law is pretty clear. But it can be difficult to resolve a case if one spouse doesn’t agree with what the law is. (As a side note, I agree that in a lot of cases, the result isn’t fair, but that’s a political, not a legal, issue).
3. Child Custody Disputes. In most cases, you can say it’s just money, and move on. With the children, you can’t do this. Custody disputes are one of the most difficult types of case to settle.