18 Things to Bring to Your First Meeting with Your Divorce Lawyer
(Or better yet, send them ahead of time!)
A significant amount of time during an initial meeting can be spent gathering background information. To save time and money during your initial meeting, so we can get straight to the issues that concern you, we recommend that you send or email us the following in advance of your meeting:
Your last three tax returns and notices of assessment or reassessment.
Your spouse’s last three tax returns and notices of assessment or reassessment.
Your date of birth and age.
Your spouse’s date of birth and age.
The date of marriage and date of separation.
If you lived together before marriage, the date when cohabitation began.
If you have children, their full names and birth dates.
A description of your, and your spouse’s, work or employment, including salary and benefits.
A list of all assets, accounts and debts in joint names with estimated or actual values.
A list of all assets, accounts and debts in your name with estimated or actual values.
A list of all assets, accounts and debts in your spouse’s name with estimated or actual values.
A list of any assets brought into the relationship by you and your spouse, if any (these may qualify as excluded property not shareable under the law).
A list of any significant gifts or inheritances received by you or your spouse during the marriage, as well as a description of what was done with the gifts/inheritance (again, these may qualify as excluded property not shareable under the law).
A description of any sacrifices made, or disadvantages suffered, during the marriage that benefited either you or your spouse, such as leaving a career to raise the children, moving so a spouse could pursue a career opportunity, etc. Disadvantages might include losing employment benefits, seniority, promotions/career advancement, ability to contribute to a pension, absence from the workforce, etc.
A description of any health issues or other issues that impact on the ability of you or your spouse to work at all or full-time.
A description of any other issues that might affect income-earning ability (e.g. expected job loss, sale of a business, retirement, etc.).
Details of any education or other savings put aside for the children.
A list of your main discussion points or concerns (i.e. what you really want to discuss and focus on).