During divorce cases, we hear a lot of strong feelings from our clients regarding answering discovery requests. The feelings expressed are not positive ones and some include explicit language we can't repeat here.
Well, we understand that. Answering discovery requires a lot of organization, searching for information, and TIME. Yes, it surely does.
"I don't have time for this", our clients sometimes say. "Why do I have to provide this stuff when my spouse already knows this? It is his/her account too!" "That is none of his business!", another client might say.
Yep, it can take some time. And, it may sometimes be information that your spouse does know or should know.
HOWEVER... discovery (although it can be a pain in the backside) is sometimes exactly what your attorney needs to prove your case. Why? Because it is your attorney's job to take and use the facts of your situation to show your point of view. For instance, say that you are asking for support from your spouse (child support, spousal support, temporary or permanent support or all of the above). Well, it is your attorney's job to show that you have expenses, and that you are well-prepared to document what those expenses are now and what those expenses will be in the future. Now... would you rather your attorney be well-armed and go into the negotiations (or battle) filled with accurate information that can be used to persuade OR would you rather that she be forced to represent you with a vague allegation that you "just need some money?" Or, even worse, forced to fight for you using only your spouse's figures because you didn't give her enough information? Hmm....
So, it only makes good sense to cooperate with this request, even though the last thing you need is one more thing to do. Oh, and by the way, your active participation in this process has other benefits! By putting in your effort, you will not only be more persuasive and confident in mediation or court, there is also a good chance that you will spend less money in attorney's fees. The case may even finish more quickly! By organizing the information and doing your best, you'll save time and therefore money with your lawyer, and you'll have done everything you can to help move the case along.
See, it's not so bad!