WHAT TO EXPECT
law and equity
The fundamental principle of law is about creating equity. That being said, sometimes the law doesn't seem like it's applied fairly in every case. Don't expect to get everything you want. Don't expect to get nothing you want. Where the law may not lean in your favor, we'll talk about where to adjust in other places to help you reach the outcome you want.
The more information you can bring to the table, the better we can help you map a successful plan for your future. Information means not just what's in your head, but also the documents you retain, including tax returns, bank statements, financial statements, agreements, emails, etc.
CYCLE OF LITIGATION
The process of litigation is cyclical. At the outset, there can be a flurry of activity as we put your initial case/defense together. Temporary orders may help structure a status quo until a final settlement can be reached. Thereafter, the pace slows a bit while each side gives and receives information about the relative strengths and weaknesses of the case. Work at the end of the case increases again as we prepare for settlement or trial.
Mediation is the chance to play a central role in how your case is resolved. When you mediate, you'll appear most often accompanied by your attorney, who understands the law and can negotiate on your behalf. You can define the structure of the mediation, from negotiating with everyone in the same room, to staying in separate rooms while the mediator acts as intermediary between you. A good mediator will listen, understand your concerns, and offer creative solutions that will help you reach your major objectives. In the end, the decision to settle is entirely yours. You maintain control of the outcome.
Arbitration offers the benefits of a full trial without the expense and uncertainty of going before a judge you don't know. At arbitration, you'll testify as if you were in court. Witnesses you identify will also educate the arbitrator of their observations. You'll show the arbitrator documents that support the outcome you seek.
A skilled arbitrator will follow the rules of evidence so as to avoid even the appearance that inflammatory evidence influenced the decision. A trusted arbitrator also knows and understands the law, its intent, and will issue a decision based upon the equitable considerations contained in the law. A good arbitrator will render a reasoned decision that you can understand. In the end, you'll have the launching pad you need to move your life in the new direction you have planned.
You ARE PART OF OUR TEAM
Don't ever forget that. We cannot do our best work without your help. "Help" means being clear about factual events. "Help" means telling us everything and telling it as honestly as you know, even if it might seem more than embarrassing. Don't worry about offending us. And remember that all communication with us is confidential.
Often times, what you're most worried about turns out not to be important in the context of law. Other times, knowing that unflattering accusations might surface helps us work proactively. We cannot defend against something we do not know exists. Bring your honesty, your grit and your sense of trust in your legal team. We'll need all of that if we're going to be able to work to the standard we demand and you expect.
FEES & FORMS AND OTHER ADVICE
When you decide to retain our services, we'll ask you to sign some forms. One is the retainer agreement, which outlines our fees. Over the years, we've observed that there are effective and practical methods our clients can use to keep our fees down. While we appreciate your business, we aren't particularly interested in wasting your money.
TIPS ON KEEPING LEGAL COSTS DOWN
Keep a running list of questions or comments that you need to share with us, and deliver it all at once, preferably once per day or every other day. This means we can use your time efficiently.
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Come to meetings on time and prepared. Bring documents we have requested for maximum benefit.
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Stay familiar with your case. Read the documents that are sent to you, keep notes at our meetings, and refer back to them.
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Try not to second guess your decisions. Your first gut response to a question or choice is usually the right one, even if your answer keeps you up at night. Trust yourself.