The Divorce Process – Part One

In South Africa the harsh reality is that many marriages end in divorce! The divorce process in our country makes it relatively easy to get divorced. However, the financial and emotional consequences for those involved are undoubtedly profound.

It is important for an attorney to sympathise/empathise with one’s client, without losing one’s objectivity. Attorneys should not give unrealistic advice, as unrealistic advice is often the reason why matters do not settle and if the matter proceeds to trial and one’s client is awarded considerably less than the attorney promised, the only result is an angry and disappointed client, who is probably out of pocket by a substantial amount in costs, plus possibly looking at an order to pay the other party’s costs.

Prof Ian Shäfer said:
“There can be no doubt that the divorce process is a complex one which involves issues, not only of a legal nature, but also of a social, psychological and emotional kind. The attorney is very firmly entrenched as an indispensable part of this process and it is confidently expected that he will remain so. His continued contribution to the attempted resolution of the many problems flowing from divorce can be measured only by the extent to which he is alive to his limitations and to the many pitfalls to which he is exposed. There can hardly be any greater truth than the contention that no branch of the law throws more strain upon an attorney’s conscience or tends as much to befuddle the Canons of Ethics as the practice of divorce law”.

The outcome of a divorce often pivots on the efficiency and experience of the attorney handling the proceedings. Make sure you hire the best legal help you can afford!