Let's face it, the last thing you want to be doing is shelling out thousands and thousands of dollars to an attorney with regards to family law issues. Here are my tips to minimize your attorney's fees:
Listen to Your Attorney
Many times I will have a client ask me the same questions more than once. Before you call or email your attorney, review your emails and/or notes you've taken when meeting or talking with your attorney.
Set Up Online Access to Statements
Most issues involving family law deal with finances, and require you to provide us with bank, credit card, and retirement statements, not to mention a plethora of other financial documents. Being able to provide us with these documents, and in an organized and electronic format, allows us as attorneys to quickly review the relevant information. Most banking and financial institutions allow you to save the past year's worth of statements as pdfs- which you can then easily save to your computer and email to your attorney.
Have an Initial Consultation
I realize that your funds may be limited, but you owe it to yourself to have a consultation with an experienced attorney. During the consultation, you will be advised about the law in your family law case- child custody, child support, spousal support, division of assets and debts). An attorney can advise you on what he/she recommends in your case, and how you might be able to "do it yourself." For example, if the main issue in your case is child support, you can pay $25.00 and utilize Child Support Enforcement rather than paying a private attorney to handle child support. You also need to be aware of certain rights and claims and when they must be asserted. For instance, did you know that you cannot file a claim for alimony or equitable distribution after your divorce judgment is entered? See an attorney BEFOREHAND, even if you want to "do it yourself" as it has always been my experience that trying to "undo something" is significantly more than if you'd come to see me initially.