What to Expect at a Virginia Divorce Seminar

Posted on Sep 15, 2017 by Katie Carter

I know, I know.  Going to a seminar on divorce, especially on a Saturday morning, probably sounds like the last thing in the world you want to do.  Besides that, attorneys are dry and boring.  And it could be embarrassing.  Because, after all, everyone knows you’re there because your marriage is falling apart.  What if you see someone you know?

We get it.  It’s scary to walk into the unknown, especially when the unknown carries such long lasting and financially and emotionally difficult consequences as divorce.  It’s easy to be the ostrich, burying your head in the sand.  It’s nicer to not think about all the “what could happen” type scenarios that keep you laying awake at night.  After all, what happens if you find out that it’s as bad as you feared—or even worse?

You should know, ahead of time, that knowledge is power, and that women who get their divorce questions answered earlier in the process tend to feel more confident and, as a result, have better outcomes.  It may seem scary, but asking your questions, getting your answers, and formulating your plan are part of the process—and, really, are some of the most vitally important parts.  It’s scary, there’s no question, but it’s also manageable, especially if you learn now what to expect and can begin to prepare yourself adequately for it.

There’s a lot to know, and a lot of questions to ask.  If you’re thinking about separating, have already separated, or have decided to move forward with a divorce, the time to start getting those questions answered is now.  And, for our part, we’re doing what we can to make sure that the process isn’t miserable.  Sure, there are better things I can imagine doing on a Saturday, but when you start thinking that divorce is the single biggest financial transaction in most adult’s lives, it starts to take on a whole lot more importance.  Sure, divorce itself is right up there with tax return preparation and root canals, but the seminar itself provides divorce-specific information for Virginia women to help prepare them to be as strong as possible during the process—which is totally different.

In fact, the seminar itself has a pretty empowering feel to it, and women walk away reporting that they feel so much more confident, capable, and optimistic about the future.  (Let’s be honest, that’s why we do it!)

So, what CAN you expect at a Virginia divorce seminar for women?

1. You’ll get a workbook, full of information you can use to prepare for your case.

We provide an awesome and totally comprehensive workbook, designed to teach you what you need to know about divorce.  In the seminar itself, we follow an outline that answers some of the most commonly asked questions we get from clients and prospective clients—but we just can’t get to it all.  In the workbook, there’s even more information, about questions to ask your attorney, specific code sections, how to calculate child support, how to live separate under the same roof, all about different types of alternative dispute resolution (like collaborative divorce and mediation), a list of books to help children deal with divorce, a number of resources for Virginia women facing divorce, and so on.

Not only that, but the workbook itself is important.  If you bring your workbook back, you’ll be allowed admission to any other Second Saturday or Third Tuesday seminar.  You can bring it back ten or fifteen years later—in fact, we’ve had women do it!  You can bring it back to attend at a different location, one presented by a different attorney, or the very next one.  Once you’ve attended and received your copy of the workbook, you’ll be allowed to re-attend as many times as you want.  (Trust me, lots of people take us up on that offer, too!)  I’ve had women come back 5 and 6 times, depending on their cases and what’s happening.  So that has an extra added benefit as well, on top of the awesome educational material provided in the workbook’s pages.

2. You’ll meet other women.

I don’t think I’ve ever had a group of women where someone knew someone else.  And, even if they did, I suspect it wouldn’t be a problem because, at the very least, both women are in the same place in their lives.  I have, however, had women meet and form a very strong bond at the seminars.  Sometimes, I have to force them out the door after the seminar before the people at the venue come to boot us out!  They find a lot of support from meeting with and talking to each other, and, in a lot of ways, that by itself is cathartic and an important part of the process.

Many of our Second Saturday group attendees also come to our Girl’s Night Out events.  They’ve been so favorably impressed by our programs at the seminars that they want to get out and meet more women (and more of us, too).  What better way to do that than by joining us at a fun social event—where food and drinks are provided for you by the law firm?  For more information, or to register to attend our next Girl’s Night Out event, just click here.

3. You’ll learn about your Virginia divorce options.

Right?  Because isn’t that your question?  Most of the time, I feel like the first thing people want to ask is this: What should I even do?  It’s a big question, and not one that’s easily answered.  In fact, it’s one that’s pretty different for a lot of different people, too.  What works for one person isn’t necessarily what will work for another, but the seminar is a good place to start fleshing out those options and considering how you might like to move forward.  Whether your divorce will ultimately be contested, uncontested, fault, or no fault (if you don’t know what these things mean, you DEFINITELY need to come to the seminar!), you’ll want to start figuring it out.

You’ll want to start looking at your husband’s choices to try to figure out where he’s thinking that this thing will go, too.  You’ll want to know what you’re entitled to receive in Virginia divorce (because, let’s face it, he’ll tell you that you don’t deserve anything), so that you know what the bargaining points are—and what you don’t need to even negotiate because the court would award it to you anyway.  You’ll want to know.  And, once you do, you’ll find that you’re in a much stronger bargaining position than before because your husband can’t harass and intimidate you like he used to.  Not only that, but you’ll be in a much stronger place mentally, and that’s a pretty priceless feeling.

4. You’ll meet a licensed Virginia divorce attorney, and have a chance to ask her questions about the Virginia divorce process.

Not sure you want to hire an attorney?  Want to ask your questions one on one to a Virginia divorce attorney before you pay for a consultation with one?  You’re not alone.  In fact, I would say that probably most women think that hiring an attorney is up there on the top of the list of scary things involving divorce.  In fact, I totally understand that.  Not too long ago, I had to hire a personal injury attorney, and I felt pretty overwhelmed and indecisive.  We know how you’re feeling, and you’re totally justified in feeling that way.  But attending the seminar is a soft option; a way to test out the possibilities without taking any huge steps (or spending a lot of money only to decide that you don’t want to hire a particular attorney or a particular firm to handle your case).  The divorce seminar is a great way to get your questions answered one on one without springing for a pricy consultation.  (Family law attorneys who are worth their salt in our area charge for consultations.)  So that’s an extra added benefit, too.

Going to a divorce seminar on a Saturday morning (or Tuesday evening) probably isn’t what you’d like to be doing—but, of course, if you’re facing a divorce, there’s not a whole lot more important things you can do to prepare for what you’re about to experience.  It’s a good idea to get up to date, Virginia specific information directly from licensed Virginia attorneys who are experienced in representing women only in divorce and custody cases.  (And, of course, we do our best to make it as entertaining as possible!)  For more information about the divorce seminars, or to register to attend, give our office a call at (757) 425-5200.