Feeling vulnerable during a divorce is a natural emotion. After all, there are likely negative circumstances in your past that have led to the need to end your marriage. In some cases, you may even feel as though your ex-spouse has more money than you to fight for their case, or they may have always taken a dominant role in your marriage. You may also be worried about things that are important to you, such as keeping your kids or staying in your current house. Going through a divorce is a sensitive time, and your first instinct may be to go for the most aggressive lawyer you can find to feel confident that they'll fight for your rights. However, this can sometimes backfire, and it is better to look for divorce lawyers that are known for being assertive rather than aggressive.
1. Avoid Hitting a Standstill
The main difference between aggression and assertiveness is that someone who is aggressive uses tactics that are designed to intimidate the other person. An assertive attorney, however, focuses on using their knowledge of the facts and family law to fight for what they know is right. Think about your ex-spouse for a minute and consider how they will respond to a lawyer that attempts to bully them. If they are likely to fight back aggressively or refuse to budge on their stance, then you need to choose an attorney that has the ability to use facts in their argument that are impossible to dispute.
2. Prevent Generating New Problems
An overly aggressive lawyer may not present themselves well in court. Judges in divorce court are bound by oath to take an impartial view of each case, but they may still be put off by yelling and other courtroom antics. An assertive lawyer may use a firm voice, but they will still manage to present your case with a calm air of authority that makes it easier for their arguments to be heard and understood by the judge.
3. Set the Stage for an Amicable Relationship
It may seem impossible that you would ever be able to get along with your ex-spouse after all of this. However, you may still need to be cautious about making things worse if you must deal with them in the future as co-parents or as you continue to divide your property. An assertive lawyer will be willing to help you hear their side of things so that you might be able to work out agreements that help you move forward. Having a divorce attorney guide you through the process of learning how to assert yourself when you are confronted by your ex-spouse gives you confidence that will carry on even after your divorce is finalized.