Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Where to Turn for Help After It’s Over

Once a divorce or other family law matter is completed, the parties usually begin to feel a sense of relief. Sometimes the case has been bitter and hard-fought, and other times the case may have been rather amicable or even tedious, but the case is rarely completely over. There always seem to be loose ends, unanticipated wrinkles and nagging questions.

To address the situation, several things things can be done to assist people in their transition to living under new arrangements.

1. You can get professional, skilled help for big and small problems. Your attorney can probably recommend other appropriate professionals to assist you to work with the following professionals:

  • Personal counselors: They can help you through the grieving process or help you or your children deal with your new situation.

  • Life coaches: They are not therapists, but they help people determine what they want to accomplish and then the best way to accomplish it.

  • Financial planners: There are different types of financial planners. You should look for someone appropriate for your financial needs and abilities. Some people have to take on management responsibility that they don’t know about and haven’t dealt with before. It helps to have someone on your side in determining how to manage your income, assets and liabilities. Many people appreciate having an expert help them plan for retirement.

  • Parenting programs: Many free or low cost classes on parenting and co-parenting are. Experienced specialists in parenting issues are also available to meet and work with one parent or both parents. It is so important to "get it right" about the kids, that each parent should put in extra time and effort now to be able to receive the benefit of great relationships later, and to make sure your kids get their best possible start in life.

  • Access Facilitation: The Tarrant County Domestic Relations Office offers free Access Facilitation by experienced and trained social workers who help the parties try to resolve parenting conflicts sensibly. It is a free service and it usually is successful, although it may take several sessions.

  • Employment options: If needed, there are specialists who help people decide on career options and transition into or out of the work force.

  • CPA: There are many CPAs who can help with your financial and tax issues.

  • Free seminars and programs: Periodically, there are free programs of many types for clients and your attorney can pass along that information to people who are interested or you can watch for news stories, newspaper articles, newsletters or blogs on your own.

2. Your attorney can probably recommend some books and web sites to look at on a variety of topics relating to various aspects of post-court life.

3. Many attorneys can act as a legal clearinghouse in non-family law matters to help you find excellent attorneys for your needs in your local area, and to some extent all around Texas and even in other states.

4. An after-care program for you, if offered by your attorney once your legal matter is concluded, can be invaluable. Having a consultation within 60 days of the date the final court order is signed could provide an opportunity to:

  • Answer your questions.
  • Explain the language in the order
  • Explain the procedures in the order
  • Discuss your options
  • Recommend any other professionals who should be brought in

Many people have a difficult time after the final court order is signed. Their lives don’t just magically fall back into place. There are a number of things set out above that they can do to get appropriate help as soon as they need it, or even in advance of their need. The transition time after the final order should not be overlooked.

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