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What should I expect in a final divorce hearing if I'm representing myself?

Decatur, GA |

My spouse has an attorney but I do not and he has not submitted all his documents to me (Ex. notice to produce)

And I can not afford an attorney unless someone out there is is generous and kind enough to take my case, I'm on my own.

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Attorney answers 4

Best Answer
Posted

If you submitted a notice to produce, then that means the documents are brought to the hearing, not sent beforehand.

Posted

You can expect a very bad day in court. You need a lawyer. Being there where you have no lawyer and he does is like taking a water pistol to a gun battle where the other side has a machine gun. And you should be filing the appropriate discovery dispute notice under the Uniform Rules, and then if needed a motion for sanctions before trial.

If you find this answer helpful, please mark it here on AVVO as helpful. In answering you, I am attempting to communicate general legal information and am not representing you (and am not your lawyer unless you sign a retainer agreement). Any information in this communication is for discussion purposes only, and is not offered as legal advice. There is no right to rely on the information contained in this communication and no attorney-client relationship is formed. Nothing in my answer should be considered as tax-advice. To ensure compliance with IRS Circular 230, any U.S. federal tax advice provided in this communication is not intended or written to be used, and it cannot be used by the recipient or any other taxpayer (i) for the purpose of avoiding tax penalties that may be imposed on the recipient or any other taxpayer, or (ii) in promoting, marketing or recommending to another party a partnership or other entity, investment plan, arrangement or other transaction addressed herein. Note that I am only licensed in Georgia and thus cannot practice in other states. I am also required to advise you, if your question concerns bankruptcy, that the U.S. Congress has designated Ashman Law Office as a debt relief agency that can help people file bankruptcy. State bar rules require that I disclose my name/contact information in any communication (Glen Ashman, 2791 Main Street, East Point GA 30344 - 404-768-3509 /geaatl@msn.com )

Asker

Posted

Thanks for your opinion. I have already filed the appropriate discovery dispute notice and we don't have a trial date set yet but I will be filing a motion for sanctions soon. It will just have to be God helping me through this process. I can not afford an attorney and I don't see anyone volunteering their services.

Posted

You can expect to be very disappointed at the end of the day. From experience, there is nothing like a trial with an unrepresented party because you can run all over them. You really need assistance

Asker

Posted

Well as I stated to the previous attorney, I will just have to go down fighting, but one thing that works in my favor is that I have all my financial documents in order and he doesn't. I'm a single parent trying to do the best that I can so if that means I will have to represent myself, then so be it. My mental and physical health are intact, so I will continue to do my research until the very end with or without an attorney.

Posted

My colleague is exactly right. You are looking at having one of the worst days of your life. You should hire an attorney immediately!

The answer to this question does not establish an attorney client relationship and does not constitute a privileged communication. Furthermore, it is offered in response to question asked and is based on limited facts. It should not be relied on as legal advice. If you are in need of more specific answers to your questions you should consult directly with an attorney.

Asker

Posted

I doubt it will be a bad day, as I told your colleagues I will just have to go down fighting until the end. Who is better at fighting for me than me! If you guys can't give me advice that will help in court, please don't give me your opinion. Thank you

David John Ward

David John Ward

Posted

I appreciate your passion and agree that no attorney will know the facts of your case like you do. Where most non-lawyers get into trouble is knowing and following the procedural an evidentiary rules. Frequently the lack of familiarity with these things prevent non-lawyers from presenting their cases effectively. For example, do you know how to lay the foundation to get a bank statement into evidence? Who has to present evidence to lay that foundation? Can they simply complete an affidavit or does the testimony need to be live from the witness stand? I sincerely wish you the best of luck, but you have three lawyers advising you to seek assistance because we have all seen what happens to people that try to go it alone. I hope you will reconsider your chosen course of action. Either way good luck!

Asker

Posted

Thanks for your opinion but if I could afford an attorney I definitely would have one. But not everyone is financially able to retain one. I understand everything you have told me and I have already filed a motion to compel for the requested documents, I only have one witness and I have access to his bank statements so I think I'm one step ahead of the game. I know you have to get evidence admitted into trial through a pretrial order and I am aware how to open and close. So with that said I am not going out without a fight. With or without legal representation. In the end it will just have to be me fighting for myself because I have no choice.