Divorcing couples are looking for new ways to reduce their legal costs, especially in these times of Covid-19. From DIY divorces to using the same barrister for amicable cases, there seem to be more options in the divorce market to choose from. Most of these have been devised by people like myself who have been through a difficult divorce and want to help and support others to reduce the suffering and obtain a better outcome.
I provide an end to end divorce coaching service for people going through relationship challenges, separation and divorce. My main goal is to help struggling individuals to obtain a good outcome at a lower overall cost, which I am happy to tell you is achievable by working alongside family lawyers.
Divorce coaching is defined by the American Bar Association as “A flexible, goal-oriented process designed to support, motivate, and guide people going through divorce to help them make the best possible decisions for their future, based on their particular interests, needs, and concerns.”
Through coaching, I help my clients stabilise their emotions and think clearly to make good decisions for themselves and their family. If they want to divorce, I help find a suitable lawyer and to optimise their legal costs; I accompany the meetings with their lawyers, making sure they stay calm and collected; and take notes to for them to review later to reduce the need to revisit the lawyers for further clarification.
One of the leading divorce lawyers I work with is Aina Khan OBE at Aina Khan Law.
Aina and her team have developed a good understanding of how divorce coaching complements their services. Together we aim to deliver a cost-effective and better solution for our clients more quickly, by putting our clients’ best interests first and working in harmony.
Here is a ten step guide to how divorce coaching can create a positive overall difference:
- Cut down the confusion and get to business – build a strategy and roadmap
It is only natural to feel sadness, anger and despair when you face a divorce. Managing a divorce process on top of top of your day to day responsibilities can feel overwhelming, especially if you have children. To rise to the challenge you need to keep a healthy mind, establish emotional stability and then focus on building a roadmap and a strategy for your divorce. Getting help from a divorce coach will make it easier and quicker for you to be clear and realistic in your own mind about the outcome you want to achieve. A divorce coach will understand your personal circumstances, identify your issues, prioritise them, and work with you to build your strategy and hold your hand while you follow the roadmap.
- Work with an objective professional you can trust
Working with an objective professional who you can trust to look after your best interests and will support you throughout your divorce will make all the difference. Friends and family can be well-meaning and supportive but they can also stoke emotions and offer poor advice. If you find a good divorce coach stick with them because they will keep on working with you to achieve a good outcome and beyond – and with a divorce coach you can just be yourself, you are more likely to feel at ease than with your lawyer without the fear of being judged!
- Optimise legal costs
There is only a limited amount of money in the pot and you don’t want to spend it all on solicitors who charge by the hour – for each meeting, telephone call and e-mail. The legal process and jargon is complex and you won’t necessarily understand everything your lawyer is actually telling you. A divorce coach who is familiar with family law will help you understand the process, explain the legal advice and language in simple terms. By making the process understandable and effective you won’t have to keep asking your lawyer for clarifications and answers to questions which will drive up your fees.
Lawyers usually charge you by the hour but some firms, e.g. Aina Khan Law offers a monthly subscription, agreed fees per stage, choice of packages and more.
- Optimise time
Divorce is a process which can be difficult to understand, there could be times when you don’t know what to do and moments when you don’t even want to think about it. It is completely normal to feel overwhelmed and to procrastinate but you really don’t want to spend years finalising your divorce. If you are not focused, before you know it six months could go by and you really haven’t achieved much progress, or even worse you are already feeling emotionally drained. A divorce coach will help manage the process, encouraging and guiding you to make steady progress towards your goal. After all, the sooner you move on the better, so you can make the most of your new life.
- Be in charge of your own divorce – make your own decisions
Yes, your solicitors are experts in the process of getting a divorce but would you like them to be in total control of your destiny? When you work with a divorce coach, you will build perspective and clarity to fully understand your options and their possible consequences. You will be in a stronger position to assess what is best for you and to make good decisions with the right state of mind. A divorce coach will support you with your decision making during this challenging time. Remember, these are important decisions with lifelong consequences!
- Do your homework properly – achieve steady progress
Your lawyer will give you lots of homework to do, such as going through your bank statements, working out the costs of running your home, reviewing legal forms and so on. In the heat of the divorce, you may feel it is difficult to find the time or motivation to do your homework which will in turn will delay the whole process.
A divorce coach will help you make progress by maintaining momentum and will gently nudge you when you tend to lag behind to make sure you understand what you need to do and then to do it on time to achieve steady progress towards your desired outcome.
- Communicate effectively to be heard
It is always very important to maintain healthy communication with people around you. You will need to communicate often with your lawyers as well as your partner, family and of course your children. No matter who you communicate with, it is important to say the right thing at the right time. Your divorce coach will work with you on effective communication techniques so you achieve better outcomes, especially out of challenging conversations.
- Improve your wellbeing
It is very important that you look after yourself well during this challenging time but it can be all too easy to prioritise everything else above yourself, or sometimes even find it hard to know how to look after yourself. A good divorce coach will always keep an eye on you, give you practical tips and support you to enhance your physical and emotional wellbeing, especially your sleep – after all, divorce is like running a marathon and you have to be in good shape to keep going.
- Keep a close eye on your children
You and your partner are likely to move on fine following your divorce but your children are very vulnerable and you both need to be careful about how you manage their needs during and after the divorce process, especially to guard against potential toxic influences. Your divorce coach will monitor your relationship with your children and will provide you with a basic understanding of how to manage their needs during this critical phase!
- Come out of divorce with confidence – feel empowered
You will feel vulnerable and likely to doubt yourself during this challenging time but working with a divorce coach will help you build self-esteem as you move along. No matter what your goal is after finalising the divorce (e.g. to meet someone new, to start your own business), working on self-growth will empower you both to get a better outcome and have a better start for what lies ahead of you.
I offer a holistic and personalised service which include:
- Building a strategy and roadmap to get you from where you are to where you would like to be
- Helping you to understand the divorce process and supporting your decision making
- Connecting you with professionals you may need including lawyers, planners and therapists who match your personal and financial circumstances.
My aim is to make the whole process efficient and effective, providing you with the practical and emotional support to achieve the outcome you want at a lower cost and have a head start to your new life as a stronger person.
As someone who has been through this path before, I suggest you seek advice early before things start to run their course. When I speak to other professionals including lawyers and financial planners, we all agree outcomes could have been improved dramatically if only we had been consulted earlier. Otherwise opportunities can be missed, situations can drift on, and cash can dry up. So please make the effort and get professional help for a better future for you and your children!
Divorce coaching is covered in the packages offered by Aina Khan Law, as well as litigation funding to cover legal fees, with nothing to pay until the end of the process. To find out more, please visit Aina Khan OBE’s website at https://ainakhanlaw.com