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The Law Offices of Alan L. Finkel.

During The Divorce Process, What Are Some Ways To Save Or Protect Your Finances During The Divorce?

Mediation is going to be far less expensive than going through litigation. On average, divorce lawyers on Long Island charge a minimum of $5,000 per person to get in the door. Let’s take $7,500 as an entry fee if you will. That’s $15,000 between the two spouses for only a simple divorce. A typical mediation will be half or less than that, and you’re going to be able to salvage whatever fraction of a relationship that you have going forward for the rest of your lives.

When I talk about the initial retainer, the original amount is no guarantee because it’s all based on an hourly fee. I’ve never charged a flat fee for a divorce, nor will I ever. You don’t know what you’re going to find. Suppose a client walks into your office and lays out the facts of their lives and marriage. In that case, you have no idea of knowing whether that’s true or not. You won’t likely find that out for a while, and by then you are knee deep into the case. If you’re going to sign up a case on a flat fee basis, you subject yourself to be used and abused as an attorney, as the couple continues to fight. There is simply no incentive for the client to settle the case if there are no more legal fees to pay. I can pretty much guarantee the other side’s not giving your spouse a flat fee. The incentive on an hourly fee as a litigating lawyer is to build and get as much money as possible without jeopardizing your ethical consideration before the office of court administration.

It sounds cynical, but after 36 years, I can tell you that many lawyers out there don’t consider the needs of their clients as paramount and will do what they can to bill as much as they can until the money runs out.

To protect your money, please don’t waste it on litigation. Go to a good, skilled, experienced mediator, and do your research. Get the reputation of that person before you go and try it for an hour, and any good mediator who has confidence in themselves will give you free initial consultation. Even if they charge you, it’s a one-time hourly charge.

After Divorce, I Know It Can Be Hard For Anyone Whether You’re Wealthy Or Not. What Are Some Tips And Advice That You Have For Anyone Post-Divorce?

You have to make sure that there’s enough money to live, which can mean leaving Long Island. When you have children, you’re not going to be able to leave to live in a cheaper place if your spouse doesn’t agree to the relocation. This is because if the children are under the age of 18, each parent has a right to share the parenting responsibilities and to see the children.

Suppose the couple does a lot of thinking and properly strategizes before they pull the trigger and sell the house, or one of them moves out of the house. In that case, you’re far, far better off than waiting until after that happens and hoping to pick up the pieces because it’s not going to be easy dealing with this issue in the midst of litigation.

The Divorce law of New York State states that wherever the children have lived for the past six months will be considered their home base. I will use mothers as statistically the ones taking the children and leaving, (even though fathers have equal rights here). Suppose a mother picks up and takes the two kids, goes to live with the relatives in Florida and sets up her life elsewhere. In that case, if the father doesn’t do something in court within six months to bring the children back, Florida is now their home state. At that point, after six months, the father cannot do anything to get those children back. I’ve seen situations where people have not known that and have experienced trauma without being able to see their children. Couples who have respect for each other as parents simply don’t do that. There are ways to make that work, not as quickly, but certainly better than just picking up, packing bags in the middle of the night, waking up in another state, and then involving themselves in litigation that doesn’t seem to have an end.

For more information on Divorce In New York, a complimentary 30-minute zoom consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (631) 462-3100 today.

Alan Finkel

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