Contrary to what a lot of people believe, a divorce lawyer plays a crucial role during a divorce proceeding. For example, imagine a couple living in Gurugram. Hiring a divorce lawyer in Gurugram for their divorce proceedings is going to help them tackle a lot of the legal nitty-gritties. This blog is going to focus on the importance of a divorce lawyer during the divorce proceedings.
First of all, a couple who is seeking divorce for the first time, may not be aware of all the legal rules and principles governing divorce in India. There is no one legislation that governs matters related to divorce and its related aspects in India. It depends on the religion of the parties and on whether their marriage was solemnized as per the rules prevalent under that religion or not. Things become even more complicated when both the parties to a marriage belong to two different religions. The divorce lawyer will be able to identify aptly, the legal principles which shall govern the divorce proceedings of tat couple and he/she will be able to steer the proceedings in a direction which is most suitable or favourable for his or her client. For example questions like, what to do when, in a case for mutual consent divorce, one of the parties, withdraws his or her consent, etc. In a contested divorce, issues like, which ground to claim and how to defend the ground claims (if the divorce lawyer is from the side of the defendant) etc. need to be tackled smartly. For example, while the burden of proving infidelity is very high, the same is not true for the ground of cruelty, since the court takes into consideration all kinds of cruel acts and effects of those acts on the physical, mental as well as the emotional health of the other party. The divorce lawyer, being experienced will know what kind of evidences to present and how to go about arguing the said matter. He or she will also know how to contradict most other accusations and allegations. Divorce proceedings are a little different from usual proceedings under civil and the stringent rules of the Civil Procedure Code, 1908 or that of the Indian Evidence Act, 1872.
Secondly, with regard to the finances and clause of the divorce agreement. There are a lot of technicalities involved in a divorce settlement. Couples may not possess that kind of vision to foresee the kind of problems that may arise in the future. The situation becomes even more complicated when there is involvement of children in the marriage. The couple will have to discuss mutually amongst themselves and include these aspects n their separation (or more commonly known as the divorce) agreement. Factors like which parent shall keep the custody of the child, how the couple shall distribute the expenses with regard to the maintenance of the child; when, where and for how much time the other parent (the one who does not have the custody of the child), will be able to meet the child. Under most personal laws, if one of the spouses is unable to sustain himself or herself, it is the duty of the other spouse to provide for maintenance of such spouse until he or she marries again or enters into a relationship of intimacy with another third person. A wife may have confusion whether to opt for monthly maintenance or for a one-time lump sum payment. Only a professional and experienced lawyer will be able to give advice like monthly maintenance is taxable and the latter is not because it is considered capital revenue. Other financial aspects like, division of common assets, for example, joint bank accounts, jointly owned real estate properties, vehicles, and other commonly owned material things of substantial value in money consideration.
Lastly, apart from the technical legal procedures, an experienced divorce lawyer will also be able to act as a counsellor to the parties. Divorce proceedings can be a very emotionally challenging and demanding process for both parties to the marriage, especially more so if they are first-time divorcees. Marriage is considered a sacrosanct relationship in India, from which no deviance is usually appreciated. Divorced couples are looked down upon and often face humiliation in the society on a daily basis. A professional divorce lawyer will help you overcome these emotional hassles presented by the society and he or she can re-instill the feeling of normalcy in the couple. Divorce proceedings can in general be very trying times, since more often than not, even close friends and family, do not give the kind of support one would expect. In such a time, the divorce lawyer can be a very good confidant with whom one may share his/her deepest inhibitions, and hopefully, the lawyer will have a solution for that.
For the reasons mentioned above, no couple should under estimate the role of the divorce lawyer in their divorce proceedings. It is always better to have professional advice in order to avoid doing mistakes.