The Divorce Attorney as Life Coach

By Doreen Olson, Partner

On television dramas, divorce lawyers are often seen divvying up marital assets and hammering out high-conflict custody arrangements around a conference table or in court; but, at Meyer, Olson, Lowy and Meyers, our role extends far beyond these legal proceedings. As trusted advisors to clients, we often serve as all-around life coaches both during and after divorce proceedings.

Our interest is not limited to getting the best settlement possible for our clients. We also forge connections that help clients present their best possible selves during the divorce proceedings, as well as to thrive afterwards.

For example, if after the divorce a client suddenly has the responsibility of managing a large amount of money for the first time, we often make recommendations on tax planners, brokers, accountants and other business professionals who can help them manage their finances with confidence. These connections are not limited to financial professionals. I have also steered clients with mental health or substance abuse problems to programs and individuals who can help them. This is particularly important when the divorce will include child custody negotiations.

Many of our clients are highly successful in their business lives and are used to being in total control. We help them work through the pent-up emotions, pain and loss of control that surface during divorce and to direct their energies to the things they can do to get their personal lives back on track.

Taking a holistic view of a client’s life is almost unavoidable. We get to see our clients from a very close perspective during one of the worst periods of their lives. As a result, we’re in a unique position to help them start their new lives in the best place possible. This is the most rewarding aspect of the family law practice.