My spouse and I would like to use you for our divorce. Can we do that?

Every now and then I’ll get a call from a prospective client who inquires as to whether or not I can represent both the husband and wife.  As an attorney, I cannot represent both parties in a divorce.

As an attorney, my professional and ethical obligation is to my client.  Remember, the American justice system is an adversarial process.  By design, each side to a dispute has the opportunity to argue their case, present their facts, and seek their justice.  I cannot take action that is adverse to the interests of my client.  It is this responsibility that makes it impossible for one attorney to properly represent the interests of both spouses in a New Jersey divorce.  Any action I recomend on behalf of one party would most likely be adverse to the other side.

When consulting with prospective divorce attorneys, don’t fall for one who claims to be able to represent both of you.  While the majority of my colleagues are ethical and practice in compliance with the court rules and ethics rules, there are those who don’t.  If the attorney you are meeting with is willing to break the rules (or equally as bad, doesn’t know the rules) at yur first meeting, you will surley experience additional problems down the road.

About Sandy Durst

Sandy Durst, Esq., is the founding partner of The Durst Firm where he heads the Family Law Department. Individuals facing a divorce benefit from the combination of legal skill, common sense and compassion that Sandy brings to each and every matter. Each case is given the personalized attention it deserves.
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