For over 28 years I have practiced exclusively in the area of family law as both a litigator and mediator. Divorce is not a bad thing. It can be a NEW beginning. Divorce is never the end of a family especially when there are children involved. It can build NEW relationships and NEW ways to communicate and co-parent. So much depends on how you approach the divorce process.

 Consider these next 3 steps...

Susan Wakefield| Attorney - Mediator - Legal Coach

THE SECRET OF CHANGE IS TO FOCUS ALL OF YOUR ENERGY NOT ON FIGHTING THE OLD, BUT ON BUILDING THE NEW…”
— SOCRATES

1. Consult with an experienced divorce attorney – I will speak with you about your marriage, your finances, your children, your assets and the divorce process in Connecticut. During this Consultation we will discuss your legal rights and gather the information we need so you make good decisions right from the start. These early decisions set the tone for what can be an amicable divorce or an adversarial divorce.

2. Navigate the Connecticut Judicial Branch website - www.jud.ct.gov – this website prepared by the State of Connecticut is user friendly and contains a wealth of information on the divorce process and all the court forms needed to commence a divorce action. Currently more than 50% - 60% of people getting divorced are self-represented, meaning they are not using lawyers to represent them. The website explains the timelines on getting divorced, the documents you need to prepare, and information on the most common concerns and topics while going through a divorce such as alimony, child support, custody and parenting.

3. Consider all the different ways you can divorce in Connecticut – most people think the way to divorce is each person hires a lawyer and the lawyers work it out. But there are many other options such as divorce mediation and the collaborative process where you can maintain control over the process and costs and participate fully in the negotiations and settlement or self-representation with the advice and guidance of a legal coach to assist you through the process without the high costs of hiring a lawyer for full representation. The cost of divorce is often why people stay in unhappy relationships and unable to move ahead. But cost should never be the reason not to move forward toward a happier life. There are ways to keep costs down and still have a successful outcome. Take ownership of your divorce so you can look back and know you did the best you could for yourself and your family.

How Has The Divorce Process Changed Over The Years?

  • Many people do not retain lawyers to represent them in court. Over 50-60% represent themselves.

  • There are amicable and affordable options such as divorce mediation, collaborative law, self-representation, legal coaching, and limited scope representation (also known as Unbundled Legal Services) which reduce both cost and conflict associated with traditional litigation.

  • Individuals want to maintain control and be involved in the negotiations and agreement. With Mediation and Collaborative Law you are in the room and participating in all aspects of the case.

  • Courts implemented a new “Non-Adversarial Divorce” process as well as removed the 90 day waiting period, and lawyers can now file Limited Appearances so you can have representation for just the parts of your case that require legal expertise or court involvement.