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Dedicated Rhode Island Divorce Attorneys don't practice in 5 areas of law!

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Atty Chris Pearsall

Authored By:  Christopher Pearsall, RI Divorce Attorney
a.k.a.  " The Rhode Island Divorce Coach ℠ "

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This article is more of a short opinion of mine than it is fact.  You can feel free to agree with me or disagree with me and I certainly will respect your opinion.  

From the very beginning of my practice attorneys have told me that I wouldn't be able to survive as a lawyer if I didn't practice in more than one area of law.  Quite a few attorneys told me that I needed to pick at least three (3) areas of law with more of a recommendation of five (5) areas.  It was explained me as diversification like one would do with a financial portfolio.

In short, I disagreed.  The more areas you practice in, the more law you have to keep up with, the more rules of court you have to keep up with, the more care you have to take in order to prevent yourself from a malpractice claim.

Attorneys tried to convince me that it wasn't that hard and you just keep up with the issues that relate to your cases as they arise.  I didn't agree.

In the end it came down to one thing.  I believed that by choosing more than one area of law I was trying to be a "jack of all trades and a master of none."  My opponents by comparison felt that it was enough to keep up with parts of the law that affected the specific cases that came to us and that was enough.  In the end the attorney who practiced in more areas of law was more diversified and would be able to get more clients and consequently make more money.

Ultimately, I came to the conclusion that dedicated and caring divorce attorneys would choose to practice in family law and perhaps one other area of law if they truly expected to keep up with the law and serve their client's properly.

Do I make the money these other lawyers make?  No, probably not.  In fact, it comes with its sacrifices including the income but they are worth it and necessary to practice in a way that I believe I should be practicing in both for myself and my clients.

When you interview your family law attorney, find out how diverse he or she is.  It will be worth it to know how many areas he or she practices in.  The more areas... the more clients the attorney is likely to have and the thinner the attorney is spread.

The call is yours and this is purely my unique view and opinion.  I share it because many people don't think of it this way.  The few numbers of practice areas, the more likely it is that the attorney's competency in the area(s) practiced in greater.  I practice divorce and specific areas of family law. It's not just part of what I do.... it's ALL I DO!  

I'm here for those who need a caring and affordable divorce and family law attorney.  Hidden away in a small office and rural area of Coventry, Rhode Island... I am the unsuspecting attorney most people are looking for.  My best to all who go before the Rhode Island Family Court.  I understand.... I've walked in your shoes!

Rhode Island Divorce - Are the Rhode Island Family Courts against Fathers?

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Atty Chris Pearsall

Authored By:  Christopher Pearsall, RI Divorce Attorney
a.k.a. The Rhode Island Divorce Coach℠

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Are the family courts slanted against fathers?  The answer may not seem as simple as one may first think.  Obviously, a divorce and the disassembly of the family unit has to, by necessity, result in the separation of living arrangements for children and their parents, as well as an increased financial strain on the parties and an acceptance of a lowering of the standard of living which the family unit had come to enjoy while it was still intact.

It may strike many men as ironic that a culture such as ours, where women enjoy the many hard-won rights of equality and recognition as equals of their male counterparts, suddenly reverts back to the archaic position where woman are considered the only naturally qualified caregivers of children and therefore, entitled, merely by their gender, to have placement and primary care-giving rights to their children, trumping the rights of fathers.  Many of these fathers, previous to the break-up of their families, took active roles in parenting and care-giving, in addition to providing income for the sustenance of the family.  The mothers of these children may have also had jobs outside the chores of the home, or they may have stayed at home in a capacity of what is now colloquially known as “Stay-at-Home Moms”.

Those women, who have stayed at home to provide particularized parenting and individual attention to the children of the family, have a compelling argument to, not only have primary placement, but to have the father continue to financially bear the entire burden of the expenses associated with the children and herself as well.   She would argue that her services are indispensable to the continued welfare of the children and her primary function was traditionally to care for the children and not to earn income for the family.  By implication, she would argue, this arrangement should not change merely because of a divorce.

Dissimilarly, so-called working mothers will also argue that they should be deemed the primary caretakers and awarded placement of the children. While their argument, that they should not have to provide a source of income toward the maintenance of the children, will be diminished (especially the older the minor children are and the longer they have worked outside the home), their traditional roles of cooking, cleaning, laundry and being the tender hands of motherhood, will come flooding back to elevate their argument to a pedestal which still elicits a knee-jerk reaction to the hallowed image of mother and child.  A culture that has touted itself as democratic when it comes to the need of children, and the equal importance of having both parents participate in the upbringing of children, backpedals drastically in the context of a divorce and allocates an unfair advantage to women.

So what is a father, contemplating separation from his children, to do?  Change the system?  Not likely.  Cry foul?  Unhelpful.  Understand and work within it, arguing for as much participation in his children’s lives as possible and also, as much financial accountability from the children’s mother as well?  Yes.  And know the law.  Know the possibilities.  And be realistic. 

The problem needs to be broken into components: custody, placement, visitation and child support.  Each of these topics is dealt with separately by the courts and each issue is not necessarily a foregone conclusion.  Each case is factually driven, dependent upon the judge who hears it, and reliant upon the attitude of the parties and the representation of the attorneys who represent them.  Know the law and the arguments on behalf of fathers.

Co-authored with Attorney Norbara Octeau (Feb 2007)

Uncontested RI Divorces - You are the Magic in your Rhode Island Divorce!

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Atty Chris Pearsall

Authored By:  Christopher Pearsall, RI Divorce Attorney
a.k.a.  " The Rhode Island Divorce Coach ℠ "

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Rhode Island uncontested divorces in my estimation have their own divorce recipe.  

What is that uncontested divorce recipe in Rhode Island you ask?

Here is my RI Uncontested Divorce recipe for those who represent themselves in a nutshell.  

1. Your own common sense.
2. Your willingness to get some professional coaching.
3. Your ability to follow directions.

Many Rhode Island lawyers will tell you ALMOST exactly what I will tell you.  Most RI lawyers who handle a moderate amount of divorces will tell you something like this:

"It's never a good idea to represent yourself in your own Rhode Island divorce matter."

But ALMOST isn't good enough for most people.  It isn't good enough for me, and it shouldn't be good enough for you.  So what I will suggest to you is this:

"It's never a good idea to represent yourself in your own Rhode Island divorce matter unless you've got some divorce coaching."

Rhode Island divorce coaching is the second ingredient in the recipe I mentioned above.

Notice the common thread in the Rhode Island uncontested divorce recipe.  It's not a divorce lawyer.  It's YOU!  

Your common sense, your willingness, and your ability will determine if your divorce is and will remain uncontested and go from beginning to end without substantial challenges.  This works for both the husband and the wife in each uncontested divorce.

To the extent that there is any magic at all in a trouble-free uncontested divorce in Rhode Island, it's YOU! 

The purpose of this short article is very focused.  If you don't realize that YOU are the magic in any uncontested divorce then you've missed the point.

You can give the credit to a divorce lawyer if you want to, but in the end you are the one who has the power to call the shots, make the decisions, settle your case and either keep it uncontested or make it contested.

If manage to get through the divorce procedure on your own without any professional coaching or legal guidance then I won't be patting you on the back.  Why, because chances are better than good that you just lost property, waived rights, or gave up something that was perhaps even more valuable regarding your child(ren), visitation, placement, custody, healthcare benefits, etc. . . that you will never get back.  You may have had that one chance and you blew it because you didn't want to get that divorce coaching.

It is your marriage.  It is your divorce.  An uncontested divorce is your chance to make the decisions and reach a resolution.  Sure, get some professional guidance for your divorce regarding the law and the procedure.  It's essential.  

Yet if you get nothing else from this article, realize the truth.  

YOU are the magic in your Rhode Island uncontested divorce!

RI Divorce Lawyers Who Have a Home-Based Practice May Be Just who you Want!

There's something to be said for the old saying "Joint Judge a Book By It's Cover!"  Many Attorneys have shifted to the home based business model to provide high quality services at lower prices due to the national economy.  Yet it's a mistake to underestimate or misjudge a divorce attorney simply by a stereotyping the lawyer by his or her home-based business setup.

Home based businesses are more economical for clients.  They create tax breaks and overall savings that can be passed along to clients.  Home based surroundings relieve the "stuffy" atmosphere of law practice offices and allow the clients to relax and be themselves so they can feel free to share their pertinent facts and circumstances with the divorce attorney which enables him or her to provide better, more accurate advice, for the client often at reduced rates.

While clients have relied upon the "fancy" law firm approach of lawyers in the past, the new home based model is more flexibile and allows for lawyers even to care for disabled spouses who may require monitoring or assistances at various times in another part of the building.  This enables a partial merger of both home and business lives of the attorneys for those clients who are open-minded enough to realize that the caliber of the attorney is not judged by his or her surroundings or degrees posted upon the wall, but rather on his or her experience over time, skill in the area practiced in whether it be divorce, estates or contract law and the lawyer's integrity.

So when confronted with a home based business lawyer, don't judge the lawyer by the external surroundings.  You'll be judging a book merely by it's cover and you may well pass up the best lawyer for your case merely because you judged simply by outward appearances.

All My Best to You on Your Journey Through The RI Family Court,
Attorney Christopher A. Pearsall - "The Rhode Island Divorce Coach"™ 

I'm an Affordable Coventry Lawyer and I'm here to help!

Call Me at (401) 632-6976.

The Dangers of Affordable Rhode Island Lawyers in Divorce Cases!

Picture of Attorney Christopher Pearsall
Atty Chris Pearsall

Authored By:  Christopher Pearsall, RI Divorce Attorney
a.k.a.  " The Rhode Island Divorce Coach ℠ "

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Lawyers in the State of Rhode Island are admitted to the general practice of law.  There are no procedures for recognition of specialization in any area of law.

So what significance does this have for you if you are looking for an attorney to handle your divorce?

Imagine this.  You go out searching for an attorney to handle your divorce proceeding competently but cost is an issue for you and everyone else these days.  Everyone is looking for an affordable divorce using a lawyer.

Yet competency has it's price.  It would be very easy in an economy such as we have now in the middle of the 2012 depression to go into a lawyer's office that looks impressive and meet with a man or woman in a nice suit who in a short period of time comes across as competent and knowledgeable about the legal system itself and throws out a few terms about divorce or even gives you misinformation that you don't realize is incorrect.  The lawyer quotes you an affordable retainer and rate and suddenly you have hired a lawyer you feel comfortable will handle your divorce for you.

But, did you do right by yourself or did you just enter into an agreement to waste your money?

In today's economy many practices are not doing well.  Real estate attorneys for instance have been hurting in Rhode Island for business for over a year now.  Unfortunately, when things get tight and bills need to be paid, lawyers in real estate might need to go outside their area of expertise and accept a divorce case even if they have never done one before.

What would you think if you found out you just hired a real estate lawyer to handle your divorce case?  Might you be a little concerned?  I know that I would just in the way I wouldn't want a master electrician coming in to handle installing my septic system because that isn't what he is skilled at.  Just because a lawyer "can" do something by law doesn't mean that he or she should do it.  Yet too many attorneys who don't know what they are doing offer very affordable rates because they don't have the experience they should in the Rhode Island Family Court.

In some cases, if you are paying a lawyer who doesn't know what he or she is doing in the family court system then you might as well do it yourself.

It's great for lawyers to be affordable, but are they skilled in what you want them to do for you?

I'm glad to be an affordable and skilled lawyer in the family court for many people.  It makes all the difference when you can offer both.

Just be careful when you go to hire an attorney for your divorce.  Make sure they are both affordable and skilled in the area of divorce by regular practice in the family court.