Prospective clients often ask me what sort of lawyer I am: a high conflict lawyer or a reconciling lawyer. Of course, they don’t use those terms. Many times, they ask if I am “aggressive” or “a bulldog”. Ultimately, what they really want to know is whether I’m going to give them the emotional satisfaction of running their spouse through the proverbial ringer.
Such a stance, however, comes at a cost, both financially and emotionally. An overly aggressive attorney in a Texas divorce or child custody matter can make it difficult to work out agreements or avoid the need for court appearances. As attorneys are required to appear in court more often and to do more work to achieve a desired result, the client often finds the cost of their divorce also growing exponentially.
Can a client’s goals be accomplished without resorting to overtly aggressive tactics? The answer is almost always, “yes.” On a rare occasion, I come across other attorneys who are being unreasonably aggressive or may overestimate the strength of their client’s case. Sometimes some aggression in response may help bring such a person in a Texas divorce to the negotiating table when the relative weakness of their case is exposed. Often times, however, clients find that there is a substantial benefit to working with the other side, collecting information in an efficient and cost-effective manner and making realistic demands of the other side. In the end, their case takes far less time and the amount spent on attorney’s fees is much lower.
More importantly, however, taking an aggressive stance in a divorce when it is not called for can leave an emotional toll on the parties involved, as well as their children. Spouses in a divorce often forget that their children can sense when there is conflict between their parents. This can cause children to perform poorly in school, misbehave or develop social issues which may impact them for many years. Resolving Texas divorces and Texas child custody conflicts quickly and amicably can minimize the emotional impact on children and the parties involved.