Many people picture “good” lawyers as being combative and hot-headed,
using volume and dramatic monologues rather than negotiation and sound
logic to make their case. This is perhaps due to iconic courtroom scenes
in movies and TV shows that have shaped the way people think of legal
proceedings, from the loud, hostile back-and-forth of
A Few Good Men to the dramatic twists and turns of a
Law & Order episode.
Sidenote: “Perry Mason syndrome” is an actual problem in courtrooms
today, where jurors expect lead attorneys to elicit tearful confessions
from a key witness. As experienced attorneys, let our firm assure you—no
one confesses crimes from the witness stand.
This has led to the tragic belief that people should only hire attorneys
when they’re ready for battle, when the conflict has reached its
boiling point and each side needs to prepare for war. With this blog,
the family lawyers at Goldberg & Gille want to share a different perspective—and
perhaps convince you that lawyers are simply allies for regular people
in hard situations.
How Family Attorneys Are Different
While attorneys (especially in criminal hearings) are capable of fighting
aggressively for their clients, family law attorneys are a different kind
of lawyer. For the most part, we recognize that our role is to protect
our client by minimizing conflict, especially when children are involved.
Now, that doesn’t mean being soft or compromising your interests,
but it does mean looking for mutually beneficial solutions in every situation.
Family law attorneys help make processes smoother and faster, especially
Most importantly, it means looking for solutions outside of the courtroom,
such as mediation and negotiation with your spouse’s attorney. Not
only is this less costly, but it is also less emotionally taxing and provides
clients with far greater control over the outcome of their cases. As family
law attorneys, our primary goal is your well-being: legally, financially,
and emotionally. That means advocating for your interests in the way that’s
best for your situation.
Why Hiring an Attorney Early Is a Good Idea
If you’re in the early stages of a legal situation involving your
family—whether it’s a divorce or a stepparent adoption—it’s
never too early to contact a lawyer. People sometimes delay calling a
lawyer because they fear this will be seen as a hostile or reactionary
step. In reality, retaining an attorney just means you’re willing
to make the process as smooth, fair, and easy as possible.
Hiring an attorney early means you get to set the tone and set the terms
gently. For high-conflict situations, it means protecting yourself as
quickly as possible, allowing you to prepare your case from a position
of strength. In either case, it provides your attorneys a chance to shape
the dialogue between you and your spouse while it’s still developing.
All family law situations are emotional, good or bad. It’s just a
fact—even the most amicable situations have some tensions running
through them. Having an attorney giving you advice and counsel from an
objective perspective, before your emotions are drawn into the picture,
will always benefit you, your family, your children, and your future.
Below are just a few ways family lawyers can aid your situation.
Hiring a lawyer for your property division case helps ensure one of the
most important qualities of any case: fairness. Attorneys are not interested
in escalating the conflict or picking a fight—instead, we’re
invested in laying all the cards on the table. In this case, that means
investigating all relevant liabilities and assets and evaluating your
situation honestly. We can also help protect property that is rightfully
yours from being eligible for division, such as family heirlooms.
Divorce is a complex, messy process. It gets more complicated the longer
your marriage lasted, as long marriages results in a great deal of shared
property and hard-to-quantify economic factors. For example, did you know
California divorce courts calculate alimony partially from how much money
one spouse has lost based on their support of the other spouse’s career?
Having an attorney takes the complicated legal work off of your plate.
Instead, we process your paperwork and financial information for you,
giving you clear advice based on what you want from your divorce. With
our help, you can make confident and well-informed decisions about your
future while making the end of your marriage as simple and clean as possible.
Child Custody Agreements
There is perhaps no role more vital for family law attorneys than to help
families in child custody battles. These are the most hotly-disputed and
tense situations in all of family law, triggering deep insecurities and
convictions about the well-being of your children. Attorneys can help
by ensuring that your children are completely insulated from child custody
disputes, prioritizing their mental and emotional health above everything else.
Attorneys also ensure that the truth is presented fairly and with an even
hand in child custody battles. By presenting your voice through the language
of the law, we can make sure the best interests of you and your child
are at the forefront of the case at all times. Our counsel can also prevent
you from making emotional decisions that endanger your case. When it comes
to your children, having a calm, clear-thinking ally is the best resource
you could ask for.
For more information about how having a family law attorney can aid your
case, call the Pasadena law firm of Goldberg & Gille for a
free consultation. We have more than 80 years of combined experience, and we are happy to
answer your questions and point you in the right direction. Call us at
(626) 340-0955 to get clear answers about your legal situation.