Family lawyers tend to have seasonal fluctuations when their practices become extremely busy.
The first busy time is in early January each year. Many couples decide to wait until after Christmas to separate. They struggle through the Christmas season trying to make the best of a bad situation for the benefit of their children but once Christmas is over they want to get on with their separation and divorce.
The second is late November and early December when couples who have already separated are trying to determine who will have the children over the Christmas holidays. Many couples can work out who will have the children on Christmas morning with the other spouse celebrating with the child on a different day but some find this extremely difficult particularly if this is their first Christmas after the separation. These couples end up in lawyers’ offices and often in court to get an order regarding Christmas access.
The third busy time is April and May of each year because couples want marriage agreements prepared before their weddings. June is the busiest month for weddings and April and May are the busiest months for preparing marriage agreements.
It is important for couples not to leave the marriage agreement to be done immediately prior to their wedding as a contract can be overturned if one spouse felt compelled to sign it on the eve of the wedding. Couples who intend to marry should discuss a marriage agreement well in advance of their wedding as it is never an easy process. Typically one spouse wants the agreement and the other does not and it’s important that they have time to work through the issues well before the wedding date. Conflict over the terms of a marriage agreement will certainly ruin what should be a very happy time for couples.
Deborah A. Todd