Updated: Apr 2
Divorce is a challenging process under any circumstances. When a couple chooses to dissolve their marriage, it is often because of years of emotional stress and frustration.
As the process continues, a couple that has struggled to communicate must now make decisions about children, alimony and dividing assets.
When you add a pandemic into the mix, divorce becomes even more complicated. Discussions with attorneys often take place virtually. Due to health precautions, courts are hearing fewer cases. The process takes even longer than before.
Understanding Pennsylvania Divorce Rates
In general, the number of divorces in Pennsylvania has slowly declined over the past two decades.
There are several reasons for this trend.
People are waiting longer to get married and may have more realistic expectations when they do so.
Also, younger generations are more content to live together without a formal wedding. It makes sense that when the marriage rate drops in the state, Pennsylvania divorce rates will fall with it.
However, divorce is still a necessary legal procedure. Whether it is a fault or no-fault divorce, you need to find an experienced divorce lawyer who can help you get a new start.
Working with an Experienced Divorce Attorney in my area
On paper, getting divorced may seem like a simple process.
For a couple without children, it should be a matter of dividing assets and getting on with their lives. The reality is more complicated.
Finding an experienced divorce attorney near me is a critical step to obtaining a fair result. Your lawyer will help you decide on questions like alimony amounts and other spousal support issues. During tense negotiations, you and your spouse’s legal experts can be calming voices that help you reach a compromise.
A Divorce Attorney Near Me that also handles Family Law
Caring for your children is another part of the divorce process made more complicated by the pandemic. Social distancing precautions that limit travel between households can make visitation arrangements difficult.
Your lawyer will help you develop a schedule that addresses the situation during the pandemic and after things get back to normal.
Determining child support is another aspect of family law. The court determines the initial level of child support using a formula based on the incomes of the two parents.
However, there are unique circumstances that may require extra attention. Your lawyers will help work out a fair settlement that does what is right for your children.
Choosing the Right Divorce Attorney Near Me
In some cases, people assume that a female divorce attorney is a better choice for women, and male clients will prefer a men’s divorce attorney. This decision is a matter of personal preference. You will be working closely with your legal partner, so you want to find someone with whom you are comfortable.
When you look for the right divorce attorney near me, you need someone who understands the law and has the right organizational skills to keep your divorce on track. If your divorce drags out for months or years, it will become stressful and expensive. Your lawyer must be on top of all the necessary filing dates and answer your questions promptly.
How a Divorce Attorney Near Me Will Function During a Pandemic
Before the pandemic, most divorce negotiation sessions happened with everyone in the same room.
Pandemic conditions make this challenging. No one wants to go into quarantine because of an appointment that could have happened online. During the pandemic, your lawyer will want to hold individual appointments over the phone or through a video chat.
If you find that your lawyer does not have a good understanding of the technology, you may want to look elsewhere for a divorce attorney near me.
Group negotiations will also happen on a video screen. In contested cases, this practice can be helpful. The emotional impact of the discussion is not as strong when you are not in the same room.
It is important to remember that your lawyer cannot affect the speed of the court system amid the pandemic.
Because it will take longer to process cases, there may be delays in steps that involve a judge and court date. A good divorce lawyer will do as much as possible to keep things moving.
Attorney Matthew Kelly has been representing Pennsylvania residents in divorce and family law proceedings since 1992. If you are looking for a divorce attorney near me, contact his office today to learn how he can help you during and after the pandemic.