There are a lot of misconceptions about how divorce works and how divorce attorneys work. Most of these misconceptions are thanks to television shows and movies that depict divorces wrongly in almost every way imaginable. One of the biggest misconceptions people have about divorce and divorce attorneys is that there is some super secret edge to getting a divorce attorney of a certain sex or age or appearance.
Many people seem to think the sex of your divorce attorney can play to your advantage. Usually there are a few different lines of thinking on this. Some people think if you have a divorce attorney of the opposite sex it somehow shows you are still desirable to the opposite sex or the opposite sex doesn’t think you’re that bad, it’s just your crazy spouse. Yet other people think if you have a Texas divorce lawyer of the same sex it shows you and your attorney share a bond of support and your divorce attorney is your buddy and cares about you so you must not be that bad of a person. It’s your crazy spouse.
Where these ideas about Texas divorce attorneys arise
As I said, these ideas are fueled by movies and television, not reality. I have never seen an attorney actually do a better job for a client simply because of sex. It would definitely make a juicier blog post if I could tell you there are times I could flirt with jury members to get a client a little better result or that a female attorney in a tight skirt could get her way with an old crotchety judge but that’s just not how the courtroom works in real life. In fact, more often than not the judge will be offended by a young female attorney dressed to immodestly in court.
Any tactical advantage due to the divorce attorney’s sex is easily overtaken by the skills, or lack of skills, of the divorce attorneys and how cooperative the client is in the courtroom. I’m sure there has been a handful of cases where the divorce attorney’s sex was actually tactically advantageous but we’re really talking about a tiny, tiny percentage of cases.
Most divorces do not even go to trial because divorce trials are messy, very expensive and often over-complicate the process. You really don’t need a jury to decide who gets the dining room table and if you do, spending $20,000 in litigation expenses to get to the jury is probably a lot more money than you would spend just buying a new dining room table (along with most of the other home furnishings you need).
Harassing your spouse with your Texas divorce attorney
Some people also try to select an attorney of the opposite sex, particularly a younger and/or more attractive attorney. They think it will annoy the spouse to see them with somebody else. There’s probably some truth here, especially if you rub it in your spouse’s face. While I wouldn’t turn away a client who selected me in part for that reason, if you think this is a good reason to select an attorney you might be unclear about the results of that decision.
Yes, you might win an emotional victory by annoying your spouse – if you have that goal – but the usual result of that annoyance is a longer, more drawn out process of finalizing the divorce. So you’ll waste time and possibly money just to annoy your spouse for a few days.
Also, a little annoyance can go a long way in frustrating negotiations.
There are many cases where one spouse provoked the other during negotiations. The annoyed spouse decided to fight everything: child support; child custody; and the division of assets. A few days of emotional satisfaction might cost you time with your children and create a less fruitful property division.
So instead, how should you choose a divorce attorney? You should choose a divorce attorney on many factors. Choose a divorce attorney you can trust to credibly represent you and your interests. You may feel you can trust a divorce attorney of one sex or the other. That’s legitimate.
You need to trust your attorney and develop a professional relationship with him or her. You should select a divorce attorney willing to discuss your needs and interests. Of course, you should consider the fee arrangement. Make sure you are hiring a divorce attorney that you can afford.