HillerLaw believes that fighting for you and your kids is most important in Custody Litigation. While Uncontested, Mediation, and Collaborative Medi-Arb - using MIRROR RESPECT - are best, sometimes you don't have a choice. You may not want to go to court, but the other parent is high conflict. The other party or lawyer won't work with us, so our attorneys work on assessments and treatment of family members, AND we handle the trial work. You must understand that the attorney has to help your family heal and handle the courtroom simultaneously. Almost all attorneys focus solely on the fighting. It takes a highly trained and experienced attorney to help you with the healing and the litigation simultaneously. You have come to the right law firm as long as you understand we are fighting for you in court while fighting for your family's health after the divorce. We feature HEALING-FIGHTING LAWYERS!
Again, the Collaborative Approach can still be applied even if the court is suitable for your case - with our attorneys working with therapists to heal the family AND fighting for you in court. You and I can still collaborate to customize a plan for your family. Collaboration, customization, and flexibility are the keys: if a trial looks imminent, we will reasonably attempt to negotiate an agreement, usually through mediation. If that doesn't work, we will prepare for trial.
Customized Custody Litigation
Temporary Restraining Order
These are often issued with the petition to protect you, your property, and your children. A temporary order hearing usually follows the service. This is when you often ask for therapeutic solutions – assessments and/or treatment by therapists to help parents and children. At this hearing, your attorney will fight for you in court WHILE STILL fighting for your family's emotional health.
At that hearing, the status quo is usually preserved unless one of you needs to move out with or without the children. In that case, a custody hearing is often included with the temporary hearing. The judge decides if you get temporary custody of the children, who moves out of the house, who pays what bills, and how much child support you pay or receive. The orders that the judge makes include temporary injunctions, which are similar to temporary restraining orders. After that, discovery begins. Again, whenever possible, we COLLABORATE with the judge, the other lawyer, and the other party. Again, if assessments and/or treatment is ordered, there is usually another temporary order a few months later. While we prefer therapeutic intervention, sometimes the judge will order a custody evaluation and/or someone to represent your children.
This includes written questions and requests for documents and things and psychological, property, and business evaluations of the parties, the children, your property, and businesses. If needed, we will take depositions (oral questions with a court reporter present) to discover information successfully. We will do that when informal (collaborative) discovery makes less sense.
After discovery, we prepare you and your case for the final trial. That trial is before a judge or jury and is usually 6-12 months from the first filing. We may try to negotiate partial settlements of the dispute while protecting your and your children's rights. If a therapeutic intervention has been ordered or agreed to, then that result will be applied to your customized solution. Remember, many cases "settle on the courthouse steps”. Right before trial is the last opportunity to keep control of the outcome in your hands.
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Let Hiller Collaborative champion you through your challenging litigation. Get started by contacting us to schedule an initial consultation.