A North Carolina divorce is an emotional legal process. While you know your attorney is on your side, you may be embarrassed to share all the details of your married life with them. Some of these details are extremely personal, and some may fall into the realm of not-quite-legal. You may worry about what will happen if your spouse discovers this information.
To build the strongest case for you, your attorney needs to know the whole truth, even the embarrassing details. Blindsiding your attorney with new information in the middle of your divorce case is not a good idea. These are some details your attorney needs to know at the beginning of your divorce case.
If you and your spouse signed a prenuptial agreement, your attorney needs to know about it. In North Carolina, a prenuptial agreement must be in writing and signed by both parties to be valid. It usually specifies which assets are considered "separate property," making them not subject to equitable distribution. It may also specify the length and amount of spousal support that one party can receive.
Current or Previous Behavior
Your North Carolina divorce attorney needs to know sensitive information about you that may affect your divorce settlement, even if you feel it does not reflect you in a positive light. If you are having an affair, have been the victim of abuse, or your family has been subjected to a child abuse investigation, your attorney needs the details so that he or she can build a strong case for you from the start.
Your attorney will not judge you, and because of attorney-client privilege, you can rest assured that your information will remain confidential.
If you have been hiding assets from your spouse, your attorney needs to know about them. Your spouse's attorney may find these during the Discovery phase of your divorce, and blindsiding your attorney with this information can put your case in jeopardy. Hiding assets violates federal tax laws, and you could face consequences beyond your divorce settlement. Disclosing any hidden assets to your attorney allows you to resolve any legal issues before your divorce so that the Court does not impose additional penalties on you.
If you believe your spouse is hiding assets, your attorney can use interrogatories and requests for production to find this information during the Discovery phase. If your attorney does not know about the potential existence of these assets, they will not know to ask the questions that reveal an accurate financial picture.
Hire an Experienced North Carolina Divorce Attorney
When you are going through a divorce, you may feel as though you are in constant emotional turmoil. You may worry that all the details of your married life will be presented in court in an unfavorable light and that your spouse will use embarrassing information against you. Revealing all information to your attorney in the beginning allows him or her to help you work through any legal issues while building the strongest case for you.