P.O. Box 77185
Colorado Springs, CO 80970-7185
Colorado Springs Family Law Attorney Steven Visser

Appropriate Conduct in Family Law Matters

Please click the arrows to the right of each question to reveal the answer.

Why should I behave myself when he/she started this case?
Most likely, your family law matter will be one of the more difficult times in your life. Emotions usually run high, but that does not normally lead to rational thinking or decision-making. Making decisions or taking action based upon emotion could be considered bad behavior depending upon the circumstances. Examples of bad behavior in this type of case could include, but not limited to, cleaning out bank accounts, not paying bills you may have historically paid, denying reasonable phone contact or visitation with children, and being disagreeable for no legitimate reason. Bad behavior does not make my job as your attorney any easier. In fact, it could lead to unnecessary expense, as your bad behavior will be reported to me by either your “ex” or opposing counsel. If the bad behavior is serious enough, we may have to address it in Court. When in doubt, you should always consult with me before making any decision that could cause problems or unnecessary expense in your case. It is always better to seek permission beforehand than to have to ask for forgiveness later.
If I have children, how should I conduct myself regarding them?
Family law matters may involve your children. Simply because your case involves your children does not mean that they have to know there is some legal action going on concerning them. Please do not discuss adult issues with your children. The reasons why you may have or are doing it are not relevant. By discussing adult issues or your legal matter with your children, you are treating them like adults, which they are not. Your children cannot help you with these adult issues. You are not keeping things from your children by not sharing this information with them. Rather, you are protecting your children, attempting to prevent harm to them, and not allowing them to play or manipulate parents against each other. Even if the other parent is discussing adult issues with the children, a Judge will eventually admonish that parent about how inappropriate the behavior, but you should not engage in the same behavior simply because someone else is. Allow kids to be kids, and when in doubt, do not discuss the issues with them.
How should I conduct myself in Court before the Judge?
At all times, you should conduct yourself appropriately and graciously before the Court. Always give proper respect and deference to the Judicial Officer handling your case. As a Client with this office, you will be provided with more guidance and preparation prior to any court hearings.
What do you mean by “I have to pick my battles?”
Simply because you want to dispute or contest an issue in your case, does not necessarily mean you should. Remember that legal matters are time consuming and if you have an attorney, expensive as well. Every issue you want to contest must be communicated to the other side, and that could lead to more attorney time and court hearings. It does not mean you need to concede every issue or point. Be careful about proceeding on principle alone. Rather, a cost benefit analysis should be used to decide whether or not the particular issue is really worth contesting. If the issue is that important to you, then by all means, proceed to court if necessary and dispute it as needed. Just remember that the opposing party, opposing counsel, and the Judge are not required to agree with you.

Colorado Springs Family Law Attorney Steven Visser
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