5 Divorce Questions — Coast to Coast (Canadian Edition): Interview of British Columbia Lawyer David Paul by Russell Alexander
This week we interviewed Kamloops, BC lawyer David Paul. David A. Paul, Q.C., was born and raised in Kamloops, British Columbia. Mr. Paul graduated from the University of Victoria Law School in 1986 and was called to the British Columbia Bar in 1987. Since then, he has been in private practice in Kamloops.
Russell Alexander: “How often do people ask you for advice or guidance about separation and divorce and in which jurisdictions do you practice in?”
David Paul: “I have practiced in Kamloops British Columbia for my entire career. All of the lawyers in my firm practice almost exclusively in the area of family law. We also practice at all levels of court. Being a busy family law practice clients and potential clients seek our advice or guidance about separation and divorce every day.”
Russell Alexander: “What are the biggest concerns people raise with you about separation and divorce?”
David Paul: “Fears about the impact of the separation on their children including relocation concerns, concerns about losing contact or losing a sense of involvement.
Fears about money. From the point of view of the recipient spouse, one of the first questions often asked is “what can I expect”. From the point of view of the payor, the question often asked is “can I afford it”. Both sides also want to know whether they will have enough financial resources to maintain their former lifestyle.
Fears about process. Clients frequently ask questions like “will I have to go to court?”, “what can I expect if the matter does proceed to trial?”, “how much will this cost?”, and “are there other lesser expensive options?”
Russell Alexander: “What advice do you have for people looking for a family lawyer?”
David Paul: “Find a lawyer with experience and a positive reputation and someone you will feel comfortable working with. Keep in mind that you may be working with that lawyer for some time before the matter resolves. If your matter does end up in court the process can be expensive. Do not be afraid to ask about fees and how they are best spent.”
Russell Alexander: “What are the top 3 tips you have for people going through a divorce?”
1. Take a deep breath and attend to your emotional health. It will help you stay objective as you go through the process. As painful as the situation is, time heals.
2. Temper your expectations. Get advice about your rights, responsibilities, and the process and the options for all three.
3. Keep your horizons short until you can see the way clearly.
Russell Alexander: “What do you envision for the future of family law?”
David Paul: “Despite some popular views to the contrary, lawyers will continue to play a significant role in
family law matters. However, as the family justice system is increasingly finding ways to help families resolve conflict without resorting to court, there is good reason for lawyers to consider ADR training as part of their continuing legal education.”