Divorce SOS Agony Aunt Rhiannon Ford
What should I do to prepare for my first meeting with the solicitor?
To make the meeting as productive as possible for you, I recommend 2 things; Firstly, it’s a good idea to spend time writing a list of questions you want to ask the solicitor. This will help you stay focused during the meeting. It also ensures you remember to cover everything that is important to you. The solicitor will appreciate being made aware of the particular areas of law on which you require their advice, and will mean they won’t need to spend time giving you surplus information you may not need at this moment in time.
Secondly, I suggest reviewing information about your family finances and making a note of the details of all assets and liabilities, e.g. value of the house, list of current and savings accounts, details of any loans and credit cards etc. You may also want to bring any relevant paperwork regarding finances. The solicitor will need to have a clear picture of the financial position of the family before they will be in a position to advise fully on financial issues. If you are unsure of the details because your spouse has always taken responsibility for the family’s money, don’t worry. Just provide the solicitor with as much information as you know.
Should I let my wife tell the children we are separating without me being there?
It would be better for you and your wife to speak to the children together. You should discuss with her, what and when the children will be told. This ensures you are both on the same page and can approach the conversation as a united force. Whilst I appreciate emotions may be very raw at the moment, it is important to put aside your personal feelings for your spouse and prioritise the feelings of your children. Give your children lots of reassurance that the separation is not their fault and that Mum and Dad love them very much and that will never change. Encourage them to ask questions and do not assign blame on either you or your wife. How you approach the separation, can have a big impact on the children’s ability to cope. Whilst you cannot prevent the children from being upset, keeping their best interests at the forefront of your mind will ensure the children’s security and stability are protected as much as possible.
Rhiannon Ford Divorce Coaching provides step by step support for people going through divorce or separation. A qualified solicitor, Rhiannon has valuable insight into the legal process, providing her with a clear understanding of the emotional difficulties facing her clients. She can also help on a practical level, translating legal jargon, completing legal forms and giving guidance to prepare for court and mediation.