Lawyers Do Not Necessarily Know

Lawyers do not necessarily knowResearch has shown that lawyers routinely overestimate their chances of success in their cases, and the amount of experience they have had does not make much difference. A professor at the University Of California, Elizabeth Loftus, is co-author of a study which examined the accuracy of lawyers’ predictions. The researchers surveyed 481 lawyers in 44 states who handled cases expected to go to trial. They were asked to rate their confidence in achieving a stated minimal goal. The study found that the lawyers were less successful than their predictions in 44% of their cases.

What does this mean for the person who is contemplating hiring a litigation (trial) lawyer for a divorce case? Based on the results of the study, there is almost a 50% chance that what the lawyer the predicts will happen will not be realized. People who go to trial with their cases put their futures and the futures of their children in the hands of strangers – judges. Although judges try to come up with fair decisions, they cannot know a family’s situation as well as the Husband and Wife. Also, what a judge may consider to be a fair determination may not be what the parties themselves think is fair. Think about people who you know who have gone through a litigated divorce. How many of them think that the process, or the results were fair? Mostly, the parties were pressured into decisions, even if they did not go through a trial.

In Divorce Mediation and in Collaborative Law there is no pressure from judges because the parties themselves make all decisions at their own pace, and in privacy. The goal is for the Husband and Wife to work out what is best for them and their family, sometimes with the help of other professionals .

Be Well,

Mike Stokamer,

Separation & Divorce Mediator & Collaborative Attorney

One thought on “Lawyers Do Not Necessarily Know”

  1. I love this blog. It is so true. Getting couples to understand this before they start the process is a real challenge, but it's so important.
    Shari M. Reffsin, Certified Divorce Financial Analyst.

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