Can We Divorce Without A Lawyer?

It certainly is possible in Washington State to divorce without a lawyer, although as a lawyer I need to clarify that I do not recommend it. I have had clients spend a lot of money trying to undo mistakes they made writing their own court orders (remember the old car care commercial "Pay me now, or...

Changing the Role of the Divorce Lawyer

Collaborative process is unique in that it fundamentally changes the role of the lawyer in divorce cases. Rather than being the mouthpiece for the client, the Collaborative lawyer supports the client in speaking for him or her self in direct discussions with their spouse or significant other....

What is Litigation?

Litigation is the process lawyers engage in to prepare and take a case to court (or an arbitrator) for a decision.  The role of the attorney is to build their own case and to find ways to discredit the other side's case. A big part of this is gathering information - obtaining documents, interviewing...

The Difference Between Assertiveness and Aggression

I just saw an interesting article by the English mediator Neil Denny in which at one point he discussed the difference between assertiveness and aggression. As he put it: Being assertive does not mean locking horns or getting into a fight with the client. That is aggression. Assertiveness simply mea...

Do You Want Your Divorce to Stay Out of Court?

Many people heading into divorce dread the prospect of ending up in a court battle. They don't want the acrimony or the finger pointing, they don't want the long drawn out process, and they don't want to make an enemy of their spouse, even if they aren't close any more. There are actually a number...

What If I Can’t Afford A Lawyer?

It is no secret that lawyers are not inexpensive, and divorces are not cheap. While certainly we believe you will be better off with a lawyer on your side, there are some options if you need to keep expenses down....

Divorce at 50

My friend Mark Weiss recently pointed out an article containing the personal story of a woman, Joy Cipoletti, who divorced at the age of 50 - Why I Divorced My Husband Right Before My 50th Birthday. She was young enough to still have children at home, but old enough to be running her own business....

Congratulations: Mark Alexander Elected to the Family Law Executive Committee!

We just learned that Seattle Divorce Services attorney Mark Alexander has been elected to the statewide Family Law Executive Committee. That is a committee at the Washington State Bar Association that oversees issues related to Family Law in our state. We want to congratulate Mark on his electio...

Does Hiring A Lawyer Increase The Odds of Going to Trial?

There is a common belief that hiring a divorce lawyer increases your chances of going to trial. Actually, we believe just the opposite. We have seen many people representing themselves end up at trial because they did not know how to prepare for settlement discussions or how to negotiate effectively...