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Legal Pitfalls to Avoid in Divorce: Common Mistakes and How to Steer Clear

Legal Pitfalls to Avoid in Divorce: Common Mistakes and How to Steer Clear

Divorce can be one of the most challenging experiences a person can go through. Apart from the emotional toll it takes, there are also legal complexities that can make the process even more stressful.

However, with careful planning and guidance, it's possible to overcome these challenges effectively. As your trusted divorce lawyers in Wayne, NY, we have shared some common mistakes people make and how you can avoid them.

Letting Friends and Family Influence Your Decisions

Seeking support from friends and family is important during this stressful time. However, it's crucial to maintain a balanced perspective and not let their well-intentioned advice override your own judgment. While they may offer comfort and emotional support, allowing them to sway your decisions can lead to unintended legal complications down the road.

Poor Communication with Your Ex-Spouse

Divorce can bring emotional turmoil, and it’s common for communication to falter during this time. However, allowing communication to deteriorate completely can exacerbate tensions and hinder progress in reaching agreements. If talking to your ex feels overwhelming or unproductive, consider involving legal advisors or using a mediator for discussions. These options can help maintain a respectful tone and move the process forward effectively.

Hiding Assets

Financial transparency is crucial during divorce proceedings, yet many individuals fail to disclose all of their assets and liabilities. Attempting to hide assets or income can lead to serious legal consequences, including being penalized by the court. It's important to provide accurate and complete financial information to ensure a fair division of assets.

Moving out of the House

In some cases, one spouse may choose to move out of the marital home during divorce proceedings. While this decision may seem necessary to create space and distance from the conflict, it can have significant legal implications, particularly regarding child custody and property division.

Moving out of the marital home could be interpreted as relinquishing your claim to it or conceding primary custody of children. Before making such a decision, it's crucial to consult with a divorce attorney to understand the potential consequences and explore alternative living arrangements that protect your rights and interests.

Letting Emotions Drive Decision-Making

Divorce can be an emotionally charged process, and it's easy to let anger, resentment, or sadness dictate your decisions. However, making decisions based on emotions rather than facts can lead to unfavorable outcomes. It's important to approach divorce with a clear and rational mindset, focusing on long-term goals and priorities rather than short-term emotions.

Failing to Consider Alternative Dispute Resolution Options

Litigation is not the only option for resolving divorce disputes. Alternative dispute resolution methods, such as mediation or collaborative divorce, can offer a more amicable and cost-effective approach to resolving conflicts. These methods empower couples to work together to find mutually acceptable solutions rather than relying on a judge to make decisions for them.

Not Seeking Legal Guidance Early On

This is one of the biggest mistakes people make. Divorce is a complex legal process, and you need an attorney to protect your rights. Don’t wait until you’re already deep into the divorce process, which can limit your options and lead to costly mistakes.

Consulting with a divorce attorney early on can help you understand your rights, explore your legal options, and develop a strategic plan for moving forward.

A man in a suit standing near the stairsAt Donnelly & Warner, LLC, we have experienced divorce lawyers Wayne NJ on board who can provide invaluable guidance and legal support every step of the way. We understand that divorce involves various matters, including property division, child custody, and alimony. That's why we provide comprehensive family legal representation Wayne, NJ, to assist in these areas, ensuring that your rights and interests are protected throughout the process.

Call us for a free legal consultation.


female lawyer at law desk

What You Should Consider When Hiring a Lawyer in New Jersey

When you are hiring a lawyer in New Jersey, there are several factors to consider.

Whether you are looking for representation during a business dispute or help with an injury claim, there are many reasons you might need a reputable lawyer in your area.

Hiring a lawyer is a very important choice you will make in your life and it can have a significant impact on the outcome of your claim and the quality of your life.

This isn’t a process to rush, so take your time to discover some of the most important aspects of hiring a lawyer in the New Jersey area you trust implicitly.

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You Should Consider Their Areas of Expertise

If you have a specific legal query, you want to make sure that your chosen lawyer in New Jersey specializes in your area.

Let’s say you are looking to get into real estate; you will want to find an attorney in New Jersey that can help you with a variety of real estate transactions and issues.

Whether you are purchasing your first property or figuring out a problematic real estate deal, you need a New Jersey lawyer that will pay careful attention to your case.

Understanding their areas of expertise will help you figure out whether they are the right fit for your case.

How Much Experience Do The Prospective Lawyers Have?

You also need to consider how much experience your chosen lawyer has. If you are facing a complicated case, you don’t want a lawyer new to the field.

You need an experienced lawyer in New Jersey, who has a good track record. Look at their credentials and see how long they have been working in the industry for.

There are some fantastic lawyers in New Jersey who haven’t been practicing for long, but you need to choose someone you feel confident in.

Do They Have High Success Rates?

When you are looking for a reputable lawyer in New Jersey, you want to make sure they have a proven track record of success.

Remember that not every lawyer will have a 100% rate of success, but look for one that is as high as possible.

It is all about you and you want to make sure you get the best legal representation as possible. If this lawyer has helped clients in a similar situation to you in the past, it is likely that they will do the same for you.

Check if they have a history of being a strong and loyal advocate for their clients and you should be safe with your final choice.

Check Out Their Previous Client Reviews

One way to check out their track record is to look at previous testimonials from their clients.

Spend some time researching the firm and look for positive and negative reviews on their services so you'll get opinions from different perspectives.

Make sure you read the details on all the review to make sure you have a well-rounded view of the lawyer in New Jersey.

Make Sure They Fit Within Your Individual Budget

Hiring a lawyer in New Jersey is an expense that won’t come lightly to many people. Therefore, you need to consider legal representation that fits within your individual budget.

The cost of changing lawyers halfway through the process is much more damaging, so spend some time making the right decision the first time.

Ask the firm whether there are any additional costs you should know about. Similarly, there might be cases where you need not pay at all.

In many personal injury lawyer cases, they work on a contingency basis, meaning you don't have to pay unless you get a settlement.

Be Sure to Make a Good Connection With Them

Ultimately, you will spend a considerable amount of time with your chosen lawyer in New Jersey.

This means you need to connect with them on a personal level and make sure they understand you and your case.

They need to get to know the emotional and physical impacts to you so they do everything they can to fight your corner.

Are You Happy for Them to Represent You?

Remember that the lawyer you choose in New Jersey will serve as a representative for you.

If there are any reasons you wouldn’t be happy for them to be your spokesperson, you need to make a different choice.

You deserve to have complete control over the lawyer you choose, so don’t allow the firm to dictate which lawyer in New Jersey you get.

After an initial meeting, you should be able to request that specific person rather than another lawyer from the firm.

Do Your Research on a First-Hand Basis

You should be cautious of referral services online because they might not give you an accurate representation of the lawyer in New Jersey.

Work with a real-life lawyer who is genuinely knowledgeable in their field of work. Referral service websites often have no legal background and won’t be of much help to you.

Do your own research and make sure the lawyer in New Jersey has access to all the resources and information they need to support you in your case.

Consider these pointers when you are looking for a lawyer in New Jersey. Only the best of the best will support and protect you in the way you need.

Donnelly Warner can provide you with a variety of legal services, so explore our website and see if we can be of any help to you.


business lawyers shaking hands

9 Tips to Finding a Business Law Firm in NJ

Choosing a business law firm in NJ to represent you is an important step you as a business owner should take seriously.

There are many factors to consider before choosing a provider of legal services so you get somebody who best fits your businesses needs while still being affordable.

The person or firm you choose extends your business, and you should treat the process of choosing a provider as if you were hiring a new employee.

1. Think About What You Need

The first step is to define what type of legal services you need. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Why do you need an attorney? Are you trying to fundraise for your business? Did you have former employee or client suing you?
  • Do you need real estate, medical malpractice, personal injury or another form of legal representation?
  • Does your business law provider need to be near your physical location?
  • How much are you willing to spend for lawyer services?

2. Do Your Research Online and Read Reviews

Once you have the legal services you need down pat, then it’s time to start your internet research.

You can start with a general search such as “Business Law Firm NJ” and see what results appear. Then to take it a step further, search the specific service you’re looking for, and consider adding in the city you operate out of finding the most accurate local legal service providers.

Build out a list of the ones you think are the best fit, and comb through their websites and even social profiles. Read reviews and look into who is writing these online reviews. Often, many positive ones are written by employees or marketing companies, so take them with a grain of salt. We also suggest checking out the negative reviews and seeing how the firm handles unhappy clients.

3. Ask Your Friends for Referrals

Word of mouth is a powerful tool, particurlar in today's day and age of fake news and falsified online reviews as mentioned above.

Surely you’ve got friends who are business owners themselves, or maybe they even own a New Jersey business law firm of their own.

Tap into your network and see who some of your friends and business partners have used in the past, and if they have somebody they feel comfortable referring you to.

4. Meet with Multiple Providers

Don't put all your eggs in one basket. You shouldn’t fall in love with the first and only business law firm in NJ that you talk to.

Do your due diligence and speak with multiple law firms and attorneys. That way you can weigh the pro’s and con’s of each and make more of an unbiased decision.

5. Determine if You Want a Large or Small Firm

The size of the business law firm you choose in New Jersey can impact the representation you get.

If you choose one that is too large, you might not get enough close attention to make you feel comfortable. On the flip side, if they’re too small, they may not have the tools and experience to represent you successfully.

There are large firms that can give you close attention, and small firms that can handle large cases, but size is still an important factor to consider.

6. Don't be Afraid to Ask the Nitty-Gritty Questions

You’ve got a lot on the line with the legal choice you’re preparing to make, so don’t be afraid to ask difficult questions.

Did you see a scathing Google review they received about a similar case? Ask them about it.

Don’t be afraid to ask about their experience or expertise. You may feel you are prying, but you’re getting ready to make a big decision. No stones should be left unturned, and if they want your business, they will understand.

7. Ask About Their Previous Clientele

Has the law firm worked with a business similar to yours before? How did that business fare with their representation?

You can even ask for names of clients of theirs that you can reach out to and get their opinion of their services from.

They likely will not give you the name of a client who will not speak highly of them, but it’s just another box you can check off on your list as you get closer to a decision.

8. Consider Costs and Expenses

No matter how big of a case you’re facing or who you want to represent you, sometimes it comes down to how much you’re willing and able to spend.

Before the end of each meeting, get a quote from the business law firm, and ask about their payment structure.

Some might require portions of the payment up front, and others will allow payment plans. Others may put in place contingencies based on the successful or unsuccessful representation of your legal case.

It’s important to ask these questions so you know where you stand financially before, during and after your legal case.

9. Make a Decision

Now you’ve done your research and asked all the important questions to consider. It’s time to make an unbiased and informed decision.

Think about what you’ve seen, what you've read and heard. Decide who would be the best fit for your business's legal needs based on their online presence, referrals, expertise, experience and cost.

Certain factors may be more or less important for your business and that’s ok - that’s why we suggest going through these each of these steps, as every business’s needs are different.

Once you decide on a legal representative, you’re one step closer to getting your legal woes behind you and moving forward with your business.

Are you ready to speak with Donnelly & Warner Attorneys at Law about your business law firm needs in NJ? Contact us today to speak with one of our professionals.