Val Kleyman, Esq., a New York divorce lawyer with the The Kleyman Law Firm and a National Advocates Top 30 Matrimonial and Family Law member, announced today that the number one rule for divorce lawyers is to tell their clients the hard truth about divorce even though it may be difficult for them to hear it and may push them away.
“Having to tell your client that divorce may devastate them emotionally and financially, that their actions hurt their own children, or that they are acting without reason or logic is very difficult for someone to hear,” says Kleyman.
Yet, Kleyman says this necessary dose of harsh reality is absolutely crucial from the very early stages of divorce to help couples understand the potential setbacks and collateral damage a prolonged and acrimonious divorce process can cause them and their loved ones. “We find our clients driven by strong negative feelings of hate, empathy, and selfishness,” Kleyman says, “but letting these powerful emotions take the steering wheel of a divorce will likely lead to a very unfavorable outcome for everyone involved.”
At the same time, while guiding your clients towards a peaceful and cooperative resolution certainly will decrease the amount of time a divorce will take, it will also reduce the billable hours and income a divorce attorney can earn – which explains why some lawyers choose to stoke those emotional fires. Kleyman believes that divorce lawyers must pursue a higher calling and put their clients and their families above the lawyer’s own business interests on every case. In service of this higher calling, The Kleyman Law Firm is actively participating in and supports the Matrimonial Mediation Pilot Program in Brooklyn developed by Judge Jeffrey Sunshine, Supervising Matrimonial Judge for Kings County. This program provides divorcing couples the opportunity to sit at a table with a neutral mediator to try to settle their disputes – a much faster and less costly process than pursuing extensive litigation.
“Telling divorcing clients what they want to hear may benefit you financially as a lawyer. Telling them the truth, however, no matter how difficult it may be, will absolutely benefit them,” says Kleyman, “and that is what we are here to do.”