Even if you and your spouse agree to all of the terms of a divorce, consulting an attorney before any agreements and especially the divorce decree are signed is important. An attorney can assist you in understanding your rights and how a court may classify and/or divide property. An agreement that sounds ideal to you and your spouse, may not be as ideal if you know your rights. 

In any divorce case regardless of whether there is an agreement between the spouses issues involving custody, valuable assets, real estate, and/or retirement accounts can complicate a divorce. It is important to consult with an attorney in cases where these issues are involved to be sure that the proper steps are taken so that the order is enforceable and clearly defines rights and liabilities of each spouse. 

When you have a consultation for a divorce, please bring the name and any contact information for your spouse, a list of valuable assets including real estate that you have, any court filings by you or your spouse, and the dates and method that you were served. It can also be helpful if you have thought about your ideal outcome and a list of things that is most important for you to walk away with after the divorce. Also have the information for any children born to you, your spouse, or both from during the marriage. If there is already a custody lawsuit, bring that information to the consultation. Start thinking about whether you want your name changed because it can be either included that your name gets changed in the divorce, or you can later pay for a legal name change through a separate lawsuit.