Understand the strengths and weaknesses to your case
There are very few cases in a family dispute where the outcome is obvious and there is as single right answer. Judges have a wide discretion to allocate assets on divorce as they think is fair to the circumstances of the case. If you think you are right then it is very likely that your spouse will think he or she is right as well. In that case if a Judge has to decide the outcome, either one of you wrongly believed you were right, you were both wrong or the answer actually lay somewhere between what you both thought was right. A good lawyer will advise you what your good and bad points are. Sometimes that advice will be something you will not want to hear but it is important that you do so that you understand what your chances are of achieving what you hope to achieve. If your case isn’t strong then you need to settle it and avoid a final hearing.
Be a reliable witness
Often if the case gets to a final hearing then you will be expected to give spoken evidence in court, answering questions of the barristers and of the judge. They will ask you questions about the information and disclosure you have previously given. If that information wasn’t accurate then you can be sure that your spouse’s barrister will seek to discredit you and suggest to the Judge that your evidence cannot be relied upon. If you are advancing unreasonable arguments then your spouse’s barrister will either be trying to persuade you that you are being unreasonable or to demonstrate to the judge that you are being unreasonable. If you are honest from the outset you don’t need to worry about being “tripped up”. Discuss the pros and cons of your case with your legal team in advance, be prepared for any questions that will be thrown at you.
Be smart, be commercial and not emotional
It is very important to approach a divorce with a rational and logical mind to make the best decisions for you and the family. This is where your divorce team comes in. A lawyer, financial advisors, a counsellor etc can help you to avoid emotionally charged decision making and instead focus on the battle in hand. It is too easy to make decisions based on how you feel about your spouse or out of a desire to get this awful time over with as quickly as possible, you are making decisions that could affect the rest of your life. At the same time you always need to consider the costs you are incurring against the value of the benefit you are trying to achieve. Be willing to compromise without giving away too much.