The three Ds
If you read our homepage, you know that the three Ds are Death, Divorce, and Debt. That seems pretty catchy, but it doesn't do a perfect job of explaining exactly what our firm can help you with. For example, our "divorce" arm also includes family law issues that might exist even if you were never married. To that end, we are going into a little more detail here to tell you exactly what kind of services we provide as they relate to the three "big picture" categories - death, divorce, and debt. If you have a legal issue, and you aren't sure whether it fits into one of those three categories, and the links below don't help - call us! We're happy to explain exactly what we can assist you with.
We help people deal with the death of their loved ones, and we also help those same loved ones prepare for death.
Preparing for death is a great idea. We all know that we will someday pass away, so it is best to leave our loved ones with our final wishes so they don't have to guess (or, worse, fight). We can help people prepare for this eventuality by preparing Wills, Trusts, and other estate planning documents. These documents can help loved ones understand who will receive what property, who will oversee the administration of the estate, and who will watch over young ones left behind.
When a loved one passes away, we can also help with the legal issues that come with that. We can take a case through the probate court so your loved one's debts are paid and their property is divided up. This might be an informal probate, where everyone is "on board" with what happens, or it might be a contested probate where the family doesn't agree. If you have options besides probate (which can be the case if your loved one didn't own a lot of property) we can help you with small estate administration too.
We help people file for divorce... but we also help with a lot of the other things that come up in the field of "family law."
Family law is a pretty broad term. Divorce is one part of family law, and it involves the court dissolving a marriage, dividing up property (and debts), deciding whether one spouse needs to support the other, deciding what will happen to the children, and more. That said, we don't only help married people get divorced - we also help unmarried people!
Unmarried people might have children together, and those children need parenting and support, but the parents might not agree on exactly how that should work out - that is where the court comes in (and why you might hire us to deal with the court). Unmarried people might have been married to each other and divorced, and now they find themselves needing to modify the orders the court made in their original divorce case (or make the other party follow those orders) - we can help with that too.
We can also help with pre and post nuptial agreements.
We help honest but unfortunate people file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy relief so they can get a fresh start and get out of debt.
That sounds simple enough, but it gets a little more complicated. A lot of work in bankruptcy happens before the case is ever filed. You will need to gather a lot of documentation upfront so we can analyze and tell you what it means in the context of a bankruptcy filing. For example, we will analyze your assets to help you figure out if your property will be at risk if you file, and we will analyze your income and expenses so we can calculate your means test and determine whether you are eligible to file for Chapter 7 relief.
The work doesn't end when your case is filed. We will go with you to the 341 meeting of creditors, will handle any reaffirmation agreements (if you have to reaffirm your debts), and will generally shepherd your case through to case closure. Sometimes, something unexpected happens in a bankruptcy case, and if that happens to you we can be hired on an hourly basis to help you with it. Assuming nothing unexpected happens, our flat fee package will get you through a typical Chapter 7 bankruptcy for pre-filing to case closure.