There were many problems with the representation I received from this office during my divorce. Too many to list here. Numerous/most documents produced contained typographical errors that would have either rendered portions of them as unenforceable, or unintentionally given benefits to the other party. As these mistakes could negatively affect me for the rest of my life, I felt compelled to point them out so that they could be corrected. It is my opinion that Mr. Schaubhut took offense at my pointing out errors made by his office. It is also my opinion that he allowed these feelings to interfere with his ability to provide adequate representation, though quite possibly his poor representation was also due in part to incompetence.
I was told by my ex that the first lawyer she interviewed reported that his take on Larry Schaubhut was that he tended to drag out his cases longer than necessary in order to intake more money for his firm. Based on my experience I agree with this assessment.
The opposing lawyer on this case used an actuary to assess my retirement account. Mr. Schaubhut claimed for months that this was totally unorthodox and was a tactic that was never used for the valuation of a retirement plan. He never wavered from this opinion until the day of my mediation. His persistent claim that this was inappropriate was one of the things that caused my divorce to drag on for almost a year. Temporary orders may require you to pay the equivalent of child support and spousal support during the time between filing for a divorce and the actual divorce date (though it doesn't count toward CS or SS). Also, your ex will also be able to claim a portion of your earnings and retirement up to the actual divorce date, so getting this done quickly is to your advantage.
Another issue from my case was also related to the other lawyer using an actuary. Mr. Schaubhut consulted with a second actuary who stated that the account was overvalued and agreed to provide another valuation that would be $100,000 less. When that valuation came in, it was actually about $100,000 more than the initial value. I asked Mr. Schaubhut numerous times to check into this prior to our mediation date. His response to me was that he was not an actuary but that somehow this number was less. It doesn't take a math major to recognize a much bigger number. On the day of mediation the opposing lawyer wanted to use this new number to increase the amount that they were asking for. Our actuary was called during mediation, and said that the number was higher because of the way it had been calculated - based on the assumption that I would retire on the day of my divorce since that was how Mr. Schaubhut presented it to be calculated. Even the opposing counsel did not run it that way. After receiving this news during my mediation I expressed to Mr. Schaubhut that his failure to place a simple phone call as requested had potentially cost me $50,000. His response to that was to threaten to quit as my lawyer. Unfortunately, I convinced him to stay on and continue with my mediation.
At the end of mediation we were presented with a draft document of the decree wording. The agreement was that my ex would receive a percentage of my retirement from the community portion (time we were married). The wording in the draft left out the words 'community portion' and would have entitled her to money from ALL my retirement - adding time both before and after we were married. When reading over the documents Mr. Schaubhut failed to catch that error. Only because I was on top of this case did that mistake not cost me dearly.
After my mediation I hired another lawyer to review the job that Mr. Schaubhut had done. This lawyer previously taught divorce law at UT. He said that even his first year law students knew that retirements such as mine were valued with an actuary.