Legal Coaching — Also Known as “Limited Representation”
I know I don’t want to do this alone, but I have an idea of what I want. How can I get some legal help without having a lawyer take over my case?
There can be serious consequences to finalizing a divorce settlement without having a lawyer take a look at your proposed settlement. Often it is best to engage a lawyer as your legal coach before you get this far along, someone who can brainstorm creative ways to solve your divorce situation:
- Have you considered tax consequences of your asset distribution?
- Is it possible that some of your assets are separate property, and therefore you may not need to divide these assets with your spouse or partner?
- Is your partner represented by counsel and trying to push you into something you don’t understand?
- Are you headed into a parenting evaluation and need some coaching?
What Are Legal Coaching Services?
Legal coaching is exactly what it sounds like. Your lawyer will coach you about what needs to get accomplished. In a legal coaching situation, your lawyer is engaging in limited representation, which means that you are not expecting your lawyer to take on all aspects of your case. Your lawyer will do as much or as little as you ask (within the lawyer’s good judgment). In these cases, having an attorney to consult with can be an invaluable resource to help you feel protected and secure, yet ensure that costs are kept low.
A more senior lawyer is usually a good choice for legal coaching cases. He or she will have the experience to spot red flags and steer you away from making a poor choice when confronted with important issues. In legal coaching, since you will likely be having shorter meetings, spending a bit more per hour will most likely save you money in the long run.
Another benefit of legal coaching is that you can work with a paralegal at your lawyer’s office to learn how to draft your own legal documents if you so choose. This can come in handy if you are engaged in a parenting case where you have a difficult opposing party with whom you will probably be going to court over the coming years. Learning this once from someone who really knows what he is doing can save you time and future frustration.
If you opt for legal coaching, your lawyer will likely give you assignments to complete so you and your lawyer can discuss your options. Almost all legal coaching can be done remotely, which saves you trips to your lawyer’s office.
Experienced Seattle and Bellevue Divorce Attorneys
Here at DuBois Cary Law Group, we have the experience to “issue spot” things that you may not have been aware of that can affect your divorce settlement or your parenting plan. Things like tax consequences of property distribution must be addressed in any settlement. Also, do you have a separate property claim you can make so that you don’t have to divide some of your assets?
We can also help you understand your rights regarding maintenance (alimony), or child support. And keep in mind that once you enter into a parenting plan, it can be nearly impossible to change it, so take advantage of our years of experience with various schedules so you don’t fall into one of the many pitfalls in which unrepresented individuals find themselves.
If you have decided to attend mediation without counsel, we can help you prioritize your goals and give you pointers about creative ways to negotiate your settlement. We can be available by phone during your mediation to problem solve if you hit a stumbling block. Some of our legal coaching clients actually have us attend mediation with them to help them reach a workable solution.
Having a legal coach is kind of like having a personal trainer. We can give you pointers and the legal advice you need to get your best result.
Contact Us to Learn More About Our Legal Coaching and Divorce Consulting Services
If you have further questions or want to arrange a confidential consultation concerning Seattle legal coaching, please contact us today. We have offices in Seattle and Bellevue and can meet with you in one or both of those locations as needed. We look forward to meeting you and helping you achieve the solutions you seek.