Category Archives: The Business of Law

Massachusetts Divorce – Don’t Try This At Home!

By Stephen McDonough, Massachusetts divorce lawyer and mediator serving the Lexington, Medfield, and Worcester areas. The September 2012 issue of the trusted Consumer Reports magazine did an interesting piece about some of the web-based do it yourself services that claim to allow people to complete their own legal documents. To read the article, click here. So what did Consumer Reports think about service such as Legal Zoom, Nolo, Quicken’s WillMaker and Rocket Lawyer? In a nutshell they were not impressed and concluded that many consumers would be better served by consulting with their own lawyer.  Yeah, I know.  I am a lawyer so you […]

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The $199.00 Massachusetts Divorce…or Not!

Didn’t your parents always tell you…?  “You get what you pay for!”  There’s nothing worse than scoring a seemingly great deal, only to have something fall apart 20 minutes after you bought it.  When it comes to professional services, nothing could be more accurate.  I recently helped a couple mediate their divorce after the Judge REFUSED to accept their divorce separation agreement they purchased online.  Their court financial statements were not completed properly and were not allowed by the court.  This was an educated couple with good jobs and income.  Some of us appear in court for a living, but […]

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Massachusetts Divorce & Limited Assistance Representation

Are you thinking about a Massachusetts divorce or do you have a post-divorce issue, such as a child support case before the probate and family court? Are you asking yourself these questions:  Do I really need an Attorney?  Can’t I represent myself? The short answer is, technically you are allowed to represent yourself.    Technically, you could also remove your own tonsils.   Alas, consider this quote… “A man who represents himself has a fool for a client.”  Abraham Lincoln Abe Lincoln was a wise man and of course a lawyer too!  Arguably, things have not changed much since 1865, […]

Posted in Child Custody, Child Support, Divorce, Divorce Legal Information, Post-divorce Issues, The Business of Law | Tagged , , , , | Comments Off

Want to become a lawyer?

A link to this video was on the MILO (Macs in Law Offices) group that I belong to.  It is very funny if you are a lawyer, live with a lawyer, or are thinking about becoming one. Hope you enjoy it.   Click here

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Reduce Your Massachusetts Divorce Legal Fees

I have yet to meet a client who is excited about paying lots of money for their Massachusetts divorce.  If you are one, please call me right away! As consumers, we like to know how much something will cost.  It is difficult to plan otherwise.  Let’s compare divorce legal fees to another relatively unpleasant task – car shopping: Chuck, a Car Shopper:   “So, how much will this car cost me?” Salesperson:  “Well, tough to say.  Could be $30,000.00.  But it could be a lot more.” Chuck: “Why is that?” Salesperson:  “Well, there are a lot of variables.  I am […]

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Part 2 – How Much Will My Divorce Mediation Cost?

If you did not have a chance to read Part One about the range of fees for divorce mediation, please do so or be prepared to be confused. The answer is X-Rays.  Yes, that is right, X-Rays. My dentist can see what is going on underneath the surface of my tooth and has a clear picture of what is involved.  The roofing contractor can only see the outer layer of shingles, but cannot tell what lurks beneath the surface.  Perhaps there is rotten plywood that needs replacement, or perhaps not.  Either way, the roofing contractor needs to let his customers […]

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How Much Will Divorce Mediation Cost? (Part One)

I just flew back  from a conference at Walt Disney World and boy are my arms tired (please stop groaning, I know that is a very old joke)!  One of the sessions was about blogging topics, and writing about frequently asked questions was encouraged.  Thus, I am embarking on some blog posts that address questions that are asked, well, frequently. The answers to some FAQs  may not be as straightforward as one might think or as prospective clients might desire.  For example, people always ask where I get my good looks from and if I would be able to fix […]

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Plumber. Flowers. Candy-Gram.

I am a proponent of alternative dispute resolution (ADR), such as divorce mediation, the collaborative divorce process and a good old-fashioned duel with flintlock pistols.  OK, I am just kidding on ADR method number three, flintlock pistols are unreliable and inaccurate. Some couples are more suited to mediation than others.  When I first meet with a couple for a mediation consultation they are evaluating what I have to say and how I say it, my personality, if they like my tie, etc. Perhaps they also realize that I am evaluating them and listening for any “red flags” that signal possible […]

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Massachusetts Alimony Odyssey Continues…

Wellesley family law attorney and blogger Steven Ballard has another interesting post on the continuing coverage surrounding alimony reform and whether State Senator and divorce lawyer Cynthia Creem, a sponsor of the Senate bill, has a “conflict of interest” related to this legislation. The post can be found here at the Massachusetts Divorce and Family Law Blog.

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Is Your Lawyer Adding to Your Stress?

Below  is a picture of a client waiting for their lawyer or mediator to call them back.  I was going to edit out their skull to protect their identity, but I guess that is not really necessary.  I think they have waited a pretty long time for a call back,  perhaps a little too long! It seems as though almost every week I speak with someone who tells me about a person they know who had a lawyer for something and the lawyer failed to return the client’s telephone calls.    Of course, they are not referring to me because I […]

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