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Why should I hire a lawyer when I can buy the court forms and fill them out myself?

Do-it-yourself kits are available. However, simply filling out forms is not the equivalent of obtaining critical legal advice and professional representation. The court system involves very serious and complex issues that will affect your life and the lives of your children. A person who fills in a blank court form is under the false impression that his or her legal rights and obligations will be properly determined by a judge. The prejudice to your case, the probable delays and the unnecessary stress is far more expensive than the cost of proper legal advice and representation.

Many clients do not understand that the information they put in court forms may be damaging to their case and can never be removed from the court record. Many clients do not understand what legal rights are available to them and what strategies they should employ to advance their legal interests. Many clients do not understand how to present their case, orally and in writing, so that they will achieve their objectives in the fastest, simplest and least costly method.

Family lawyers are educated, trained and licensed to represent spouses in court. Family lawyers are familiar with recent changes in the law and are familiar with the court process. The court process is complex. It is based on rules of procedure, such as the Rules of Civil Procedure and the Family Law Rules. The relief sought is based on legislation such as the Family Law Act and the Children’s Law Reform Act. A Family lawyer is professionally trained to prepare your court documents and make oral arguments to a judge who will decide the outcome. It is critical to obtain legal advice and representation by a family lawyer when separating.