1. How soon can I get in for an initial consultation?
At Ward Law Offices, LLC, it is our goal to provide excellent customer service to both our current clients and our potential clients. We try to meet with potential clients within a day or two of the initial telephone call, but this varies.
2. What should I bring with me to the initial consultation?
An initial consultation is a time where you can meet with an attorney who will answer questions related to your unique situation. It is important to come prepared with questions for the attorney. It is often helpful to bring notes regarding assets (i.e. houses, land, business holdings, general income information, and bank accounts), as well as your most recent income tax return, to the initial meeting. If you are meeting with an attorney regarding a custody matter, please bring copies of any current court orders pertaining to parenting time for the children.
If you have been served with a petition, please bring it and all related paperwork with you to the initial consultation. This will allow the attorney to accurately explain to you what has been filed and how it effects you.
If you are eager to move forward quickly, you may fill out our questionnaire for your matter (either divorce/separation or custody/parenting time matter), and bring the document with you to the meeting. On this website, under Client Resources, there is a link for questionnaires. It is not required that you fill out the questionnaire prior to the initial consultation, but in a situation where you want to file quickly, it is helpful to have this information early. Please note that there is a questionnaire for divorce/separate maintenance, and a separate questionnaire for custody and parenting time.
3. How does my retainer work?
The initial retainer requested by your attorney is based on the complexity and novelty of the issues in your case. The retainer you pay is essentially paying for a block of your attorney’s time up front. Once the retainer is paid, your attorney begins work on your case. We do not accept cases on a flat fee or on a contingency fee basis.
Your retainer funds are held in our trust account until you are billed each month. Your invoice is detailed, and reflects how much time was spent on your case and what amount of your retainer was used. Your attorney will bill her time by the tenth of an hour, with a description of what work was accomplished during that time. If your legal fees exceed your retainer amount, it is your responsibility to pay any balance within thirty (30) days. If, however, your case is closed and you have remaining retainer funds, those remaining funds will be promptly refunded back to you.
4. How long does it take to get a divorce?
The length of time of any divorce action is heavily dependent on the attitude and degree of cooperation between the parties and attorneys involved. In Kansas, the minimum amount of time for a divorce is sixty (60) days from the date of filing the petition for divorce, although it can be finalized sooner if there is an emergency.
In cases where the divorce is contested, that is, the parties disagree on property division, spousal or child support, or child custody and parenting time, a divorce can take much longer, because the Court will need to set a time for a trial in order to decide the outstanding issue(s).
The Court may, in its discretion, allow an “emergency” divorce. An emergency divorce is granted prior to the expiration of the sixty days, and is usually only allowed if a party has a letter from a medical physician describing that the continuation of the marriage is detrimental to the party’s health and well-being.
5. What is the difference between separate maintenance (legal separation) and divorce?
Divorce and separate maintenance actions are similar in that both actions divide property, and make orders for spousal and child support and custody of children. The difference is that an action for separate maintenance will leave the marriage relationship intact, while divorce severs the marital relationship. You may not remarry until the marital relationship has been severed by divorce.
6. What is spousal maintenance?
In Kansas, alimony or spousal support is referred to as spousal maintenance. There is no automatic right to spousal maintenance in Kansas. The attorneys at Ward Law Offices, LLC, are specially equipped to analyze your case and help you understand the complexities of paying or receiving spousal maintenance.
8. How do I pay my retainer or invoice?
We accept cash, check, and credit cards (Visa, MasterCard and Discover). For your convenience, we offer online bill pay. You can pay your bill online.
9. Where is the office located?
We are located on the west edge of downtown Wichita, Kansas. Our address is 345 N. Riverview, Ste. 120, Wichita, Kansas, 67203.
From Kellogg, drive north on Broadway. Turn left onto 2nd Street. Continue west on 2nd Street, through the signal at 2nd and Waco. Proceed through the signal, and make a right on the first side street which is Riverview. Follow Riverview, and turn left into the Riverview Building parking lot. Visitor parking is available in the first row of parking around the building. Ward Law Offices is located on the first floor, in Ste. 120.