My coaching model offers you the opportunity to get legal advice on a pay-as-you-go basis. Book appointments as needed and work with me to draft pleadings, review your case, or prepare for a hearing. The alternative and more traditional model is to pay a retainer of around $5000 for full representation (and this is only the beginning - the average divorce case costs $11,500 under the traditional model). When you are fully represented, your attorney speaks for you in court and handles every interaction with the opposing party and opposing attorney, if there is one. Even legal documents are served on your attorney instead of you. When you represent yourself and work with me as a legal coach, you will handle all of this. I'll be available as needed to advise you and prepare legal pleadings you need to file into your case.
Fees vary depending on the nature of the hearing, but are always estimated at no more time than it should take to prepare and argue your case, so that you don't have to pay a large retainer in advance.
After a decade of practicing law, I truly do not believe that attorneys automatically win better results in court than well-prepared self-represented individuals. You know your case better than anyone, and the court strives to deliver a fair result, regardless of whether the parties have lawyers. Always keep in mind that the outcome of your case depends on the facts of the case, so it's not possible to guarantee a good result whether you have an attorney or not. However, with some help and support, you can be confident that you've filed the most powerful pleadings possible and have a clear strategy when you walk into the courtroom.
In addition to family law, I also accept some consumer protection cases and landlord-tenant cases (on behalf of tenants). I also draft wills, durable powers of attorney, and life care/directive documents. If you aren't sure whether your case fits into one of the above categories, please email me with a description of your case.
We will be focused and efficient in order to maximize your value and increase the amount of work we are able to accomplish at your meeting. If we are drafting a pleading to be filed with the court, it's generally my goal to complete it if at all possible, or leave you with very little to finish before your pleading is ready to file. Complicated cases may require another appointment to complete the document.
If we finished the pleading that you came to work on, then I will give you instructions on how to file with the court and how to properly serve your documents. If needed, I will give you instructions for scheduling a hearing. At the end of our appointment, you will have a clear idea of what you need to do next to advance your case.
This varies widely and depends on factors including whether your case is contested, and whether you need temporary orders. An uncontested case with no kids and minimal or no property to divide could be as few as two appointments - one to draft the petition and review what you need to file, and one to draft your final decree. If your case is more complex, you will likely need additional support.
The best person to make choices about your life and advocate for you IS you. You don't need an attorney to charge you $200-400 hourly to open every letter or answer every simple little phone call related to your case. You can do these things yourself. What you need is a strategy and effective support when it counts, and that's what you will get when you work with me. On average, every appointment with me saves you over $1000 in traditional legal retainer fees. By doing the administrative work of the case yourself and keeping me in your corner for legal advice and support, you have an excellent shot at the best outcome possible.
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