Your First Meeting: What to Bring with You

Posted On April 7th, 2016 by Michael Dunham

[Ed: Originally published on Facebook.]

This week we’ve been talking about your first meeting with a lawyer. Yesterday we talked about how to act and what to expect at your first meeting. Today I want to give you a few ideas about what to bring with you:

  • Financial information is usually helpful – for example, paystubs (yours and your spouse’s); tax returns; retirement and bank account statements; and recent statements for your mortgage, car notes, credit cards, and any other debts.
  • If there is a “fault issue” you want to discuss (e.g., family violence, or infidelity), documentation such as police reports and correspondence will be helpful.
  • If you and your spouse have already discussed divorce and/or possible settlement options, any of that documentation will be helpful. This can include anything from a spreadsheet showing a proposed asset division, to notes regarding a possible custody schedule, to pleadings in a divorce case that you or your spouse may have already filed.

This list could, of course, be much, much longer. The attorney will likely have a list of things he wants you to bring to the first meeting that he can send you when you first call. If he does not suggest it himself, ask him if he can email you a list.