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Divorce2019-08-26T18:42:51+00:00

Get legal advice from a Kitsap County Divorce Lawyer!

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Experienced, Local Kitsap County Divorce LawyerProtecting You and Your Best Interests

At Compass Legal Services, P.S. we understand that Divorce or a Legal Separation is sometimes the kindest option available to save what remains valuable in a marriage.  When divorce becomes the final responsible decision to make, our Kitsap County Divorce Lawyers are here to provide experienced guidance through the legal process to ensure an equitable resolution without compromising your personal values.

Why should I hire a Kitsap County Divorce Lawyer?

Hiring an experienced, local, Kitsap County Divorce Lawyer can make a significant difference in your case.  Local attorneys typically have more experience working with the local judicial system, including detailed understandings of local rules and procedure;  the judges and commissioners; and developed professional relationships with other local attorneys which can be instrumental in both settling case matters and preparing trial strategies.  Costly mistakes often occur when attorneys don’t know the rules of the courts they are arguing in.  Attorneys from large firms in surrounding metro areas are not only likely to be less experienced working in the Kitsap County Courts, they are typically much more expensive and simply more difficult to access when you need help the most.

How can a Kitsap County Divorce Lawyer at Compass Legal Services, P.S. help me?

Divorce is complicated, even when it’s simple.  It’s emotional, even when spouses agree it’s the best way forward and commit to kindness and compassion through the process.  It’s the language of the documents, awkward (and mandatory) procedures that conceptually resemble secret handshakes, statutes or policies prohibiting this and demanding that, or the extremely personal circumstances that brought you to the point of considering divorce as a real option for you to begin with.  Even divorce lawyers hire divorce lawyers when the situation arises.

Divorce changes lives and has definite legal consequences. Our job is to make sure that you are as fully prepared as possible and understand your responsibilities and options as this process unfolds.  Our clients work with us because we are experienced, allowing us to see the details at each step and how they come together in the big picture.  When the curveballs are thrown, and that happens, we know how to help you manage those situations, so they don’t become train wrecks.

If you are considering a divorce or have been served with a Petition for Divorce, filed in Kitsap County,  by your spouse or their attorney, contact a Kitsap County Divorce Lawyer as soon as possible.  We provide an affordable consultation with an attorney with no pressure to hire us. Our goal is to provide you with the information you need to make the best decisions possible for yourself and to serve as a resource for you as you decide how you wish to proceed.

Filing For Divorce

Compass Legal Services provides documents only services, legal consulting services for Pro se clients and full legal representation service options for divorce matters to be filed in Kitsap County.  A Petition for Divorce may be filed with the Superior Court of the State of Washington in Kitsap County by either party to the case provided that one or both parties resides in Kitsap County.  To finalize a divorce with minor children a parenting plan and child support must be established.  Each parent must attend a mandatory parenting class that meets specific requirements outlined by the court.  Washington State requires a a 90-day “cooling off” period after a petition for divorce is filed before final divorce orders may be entered.

Compass Legal Services provides documents only services, legal consulting services for Pro se clients and full legal representation service options for divorce matters to be filed in Lincoln County, Washington. The Superior Court of the State of Washington in Lincoln County allows all Washington residents, regardless of their physical location, to file for uncontested divorce in Lincoln County.  Filing in Lincoln County can be done by mail and the court will also allow presentation of final orders by the Lincoln County Clerk for a small fee.  By paying this fee, neither party to the divorce is required to be present in order to finalize the divorce.  For divorce with minor children a parenting plan and child support must be established in order to finalize the divroce; however, there is no mandatory parenting class requirement when filing in Lincoln County.  The mandatory 90 day “cooling off” period is also required for Lincoln County divorce matters.

Primary Aspects of Washington Divorce Cases

When minor children are a consideration in divorce matters, especially those born of the marriage to be dissolved, the well-being of and responsibility for those children is a primary aspect of the divorce that must be addressed according to specific statutory guidelines.  A Parenting Plan and Child Support Order will be required before a divorce can be finalized.  Additionally, for divorces filed in Kitsap County, both parents are required to take a mandatory, court approved Parenting class before a divorce may be finalized.

Washington State is a “No-Fault” and “Community Property” state.  This means that either spouse may request a divorce at any time without blame or fault being assigned to either spouse and that all assets and debts, including real property such as houses, land and other real estate, belong equally to both spouses.  Accordingly, when a marriage ends, these assets and debts are to be divided equitably between each spouse.

We frequently work with clients possessing significant assets, those with potential disparities in personal income between the spouses, and clients with complicated mixes of community property and separate property acquired by one or even both spouses before or durng their marriage.  Sheer volume and complexity of assets, debts and property often require careful negotiation to ensure the final split is equitable and fair for both spouses to a degree that would not cause a judge to balk at finalizing the divorce.

Should I call a Divorce Attorney?

Waiting to reach out for help is always a bad idea, especially if you have been served with court documents that carry a deadline for a response or if a hearing is already scheduled. If you think you need legal advice or don’t feel comfortable managing your case or going to court on your own, don’t wait until a week or a couple of days before a hearing or a deadline to reach out as most firms do not have walk-in availability. Our attorneys can provide you with specific guidance and support to help you address your legal matter with confidence.

To schedule a legal consultation, call our office at 360.471.3300.

Contacting Compass Legal Services, P.S.

If you are ready to discuss your legal matter with one of our Kitsap County Family Law Attorneys we invite you to call our office at 360.471.3300 to schedule a legal consultation.  We strongly encourage anyone involved in or considering action regarding a Family Law matter to be proactive and reach out for help and guidance, if needed, as early as possible.

Kitsap & Washington Family Law Resources

Kitsap Community Focused Law Firm

We take great pride in our community and the opportunity we have to serve as a resource for all of the communities across Kitsap County including Port Orchard, Olalla, Bremerton, Silverdale, Seabeck, Poulsbo, Kingston, Hansville, Bainbridge and outlying communities.  We are also honored to provide legal services for our military community including Naval Base Kitsap in Bremerton, Bangor and Keyport.

3dman graphic depicting legal negotiation for divorceIn a perfect world one might say divorce never happens, but if they do our clients would get exactly what they ask for every time and the other parties would agree without question.  The reality in divorce matters is that both parties will almost universally have to compromise something before the matter is finalized.

Negotiation is a fundamental part of most divorce cases.  Where possible, we encourage our clients to make an effort to communicate with their spouses to come to a fair and equitable agreement for splitting the marital estate and ensuring responsible opportunity for both parents to care for their children.  Those communications are not always possible or effective.

At Compass Legal Services, P.S. each Kitsap County Divorce Lawyer is highly skilled in the art of negotiation and have illustrated their ability to protect our client’s best interests repeatedly in diverse circumstances.  Managing Attorney Heather Forrler has an extensive background in settlement negotiation in both Personal Injury and Family Law.  She is a trained mediator and serves as an Arbitrator for the State of Washington and Kitsap County.  Attorney Eric McDonald is also a highly trained and experienced negotiator bringing both his experience as a Naval JAG Corps attorney and intensive training in high level negotiation acquired through his naval and legal career and while completing a Master’s Degree in National Security and Strategic Studies from the Naval War College.

word collage symbolizing ethical kitsap county divorce attorneyAt Compass Legal Services, P.S., our legal practice is an intentional extension of the values our staff and attorneys hold for ourselves and our families.  As members of our community reach out to us for help, they recognize quickly that we value them as people and our desire to help them is as genuine as our desire to help our families and our neighbors.  Our integrity is important to us and we strive to help our clients traverse complicated and emotional legal process with their own personal values intact. We endeavor to treat all people with respect.

From our experience working with hundreds of clients involved in divorce matters, divorce does not have to be explosive and dramatic.  Such circumstances are the result of choices, often entirely beyond our clients’ control.  Our Kitsap County Divorce Lawyers do not engage in legal warfare for the sake of vengeance and rampant emotionalism.  Wherever possible, we promote peaceful negotiation and equitable settlement because experience has proven that the best results usually arise from these methods.  When such methods become impossible, we advocate for our client’s best interests with precise and carefully considered strategy.  There is an important distinction between aggressive and effective.

Ultimately, the safety and well-being of children involved in the cases we work on and the safety and well-being of our clients are our top priorities.  To the limits of our power, we work to protect these individuals from unnecessary stresses, intimidation, threats or attack by opposing parties and counsel.

Divorce Blogs

Compass Legal Services, P.S. goes in depth on Washington State and Kitsap County Divorce

For more information about specific topics related to Washington Divorce check out the articles below or visit our full blog.