We recently caught up with guest blogger, Gunjan to discover to discover his top tips for new divorce lawyers during the Covid-19 pandemic. This is what he said:
“It is not surprising for divorce lawyers to deal with all kinds of new and confusing situations. When it comes to dealing with individuals or couples, one can always expect all sorts of surprises. However, the Covid-19 pandemic hitting the world all at once is something that no one could predict.
The only thing that any of us can do during this situation is to learn to adapt. Thinking on your feet and coming up with new ways to do old things has become the norm.
Over the years, lawyers see all kinds of situations- from natural disasters to bear markets, real estate crash, and even financial recessions. In some way or the other, all these situations slow down or even alter laws and the wheels of justice.
Currently, new divorce lawyers have to deal with a situation like never before – a worldwide pandemic. With no option left but to move with the times, here are some tips for new divorce lawyers during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Accept The Change
The only way to move forward in this new world is first to accept the change. Most industries around the globe are switching to virtual means of doing their jobs. From the IT industry to teaching, education, and even law.
New divorce lawyers must be able to practice law virtually. You should learn the latest technologies which will help you connect with your clients and peers. As far as possible, you need to conduct your meetings and practices online and keep safety a priority.
Moreover, court hearings are also moving to online platforms now. As a lawyer, you need to be comfortable with this change and even embrace it. The plush offices and suites need to be on hold for the next few months, or however long this takes.
As far as possible, learn new technologies such as Microsoft Teams, Zoom, and Google Meet. It is essential to have a working smartphone, tablet or iPad, and a laptop to conduct your meetings and work virtually.
Be Mindful & Practice Empathy
The legal landscape is constantly changing during this pandemic period. Lawyers and their clients have no option but to learn new technologies and continually adjust to the changing times. This inevitably is bringing a massive amount of stress, pressure, and frustration amongst us all.
During this time, it is essential to remember that we are all in this together. Lawyers must practice mindfulness and awareness when dealing with their clients. No doubt, tensions are rising due to the already horrific situation we are all in.
Furthermore, dealing with an ongoing divorce is never a comfortable situation. A divorce lawyer must exercise empathy when dealing with clients who might be going through a messy divorce. However, while doing so, they must also remember that self-care is just as important.
Lawyers and solicitors must remember to stay in touch with their peers, friends, and families. As such, it is not possible to meet anyone physically due to social distancing and lockdown restrictions. However, there is absolutely no restriction on virtual meetings and parties. Remember to keep in touch with your friends and family regularly as a form of self-care.
Moreover, keep some time aside for yourself, as it is relatively easy to work continuously from home and forget about taking care of yourself.
Keep Up Court Orders
During a pandemic, it can be easy for clients to start negotiating with terms or make excuses not to abide by court orders. As a divorce lawyer, you must inform your clients about these actions’ dangerous consequences.
Advice all your current clients to keep in mind any court order that comes their way and abide by them. In theory, if a court order demands that a parent’s possession of their child should end when their school would resume, the parents need to follow this order.
As we are aware, schools and educational institutes are back on their feet, taking to virtual classrooms. This means that in theory, the children attend school, and their classes are in session. Parents have to give up their child custody during their school resumes as if there is no pandemic going on currently.
As a divorce lawyer, you will have to explain these terms to your clients explicitly. Of course, it is understandable that issues surrounding child custody are rising as the world around us is shutting down. However, you must address these concerns and work out a solution with both parents.
- Some of the common factors you need to keep in mind are:
- To maintain a high level of communication with parents at all times
- To encourage them to follow court orders and tell them of the consequences if they do not follow them
- To encourage them to follow state orders and local orders
- Teach them how to use technology and virtual platforms to make communication easier
It would be best if you also encouraged them to make parenting decisions after getting their information from reliable news sources only
The world is turning upside down because of this Covid-19 pandemic. It should not come as a surprise that many families are also facing extreme stress and making difficult decisions during the time, such as to part ways. Families that are already living separately are also facing tremendous issues.
However, as a divorce lawyer, your legal obligation is to continue your service to the best possible. To do this, you can take as much help as you require from your seniors, peers, friends, family, and colleagues. Of course, keeping in touch and staying calm when dealing with clients is also essential
Empathy and understanding can be some of the most important things you can exercise during this period. As such, you must take good care of yourself while doing your job to your fullest potential. The world is dealing with an extremely stressful situation right now, and we need lawmakers and authorities to function well to live in a stable world once again.”
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