Clients often ask: “What are some of the mistakes people make when they have a family law issue?”
Common issues, such as divorce, post-judgment enforcement, or prenuptial agreements can begin with surprising haste, and even before things begin at an official capacity, you might find that you’re already behind the ball. For that reason, we often see that people sometimes wait too long to speak to a family lawyer when a potential or actual family law issue arises.
It is never too early to speak to a family lawyer about a potential or actual family law problem. And in fact, any delay in seeking professional help can result in more problems or might cause the original problem to grow.
Why Seek a Family Lawyer Early?
First, you should speak with a legal professional as soon as possible because any consultation with a family lawyer will be confidential. In other words, the other person or persons involved in the issue will not know about the meeting or what has been discussed.
Second, it's important to point out that simply because a potential client speaks with a family lawyer does not mean anything official will be started unless the client authorizes such action.
Third, a client is always in a much stronger position to make informed and smart decisions about the problem when armed with the information gathered at the consult. And in fact, most parties who have spoken to a lawyer actually have less fear of the unknown after their meeting.
What Happens If I Wait Too Long To Speak with an Attorney?
As noted, any delay can cause issues. For example, waiting too close to the date of marriage to start the prenuptial process can cause enforcement and negotiation issues. For a divorce, the date of filing a complaint for a divorce can make a major difference in the alimony obligation imposed, and can affect what property may be included for division. Seeking a divorce lawyer too late could even alter the value used for property (such as in a business), and it may affect how a court will address custody and parenting time issues. Moreover, for cases involving compliance and enforcement issues for existing agreements, any delay can hinder pursuing rights under agreements.
These are just a few examples of the many issues that can arise with any family law issue if a client waits too long to speak with a family lawyer. The best advice we can give is to set up a consultation as soon as there may be an issue– or even a hint of an issue. It is never too early.
Ready to discuss your family law case with one of our attorneys? Contact our team at Ziegler & Resnick LLC today by calling (973) 533-1100.