W. Michael Franklin Law, LLC is a law firm in Denver, Colorado which handles Divorces and Family Law matters (such as parenting time and decision-making issues, legal separations, child support, property division, spousal support, and post-decree modification) as well as Family Law Litigation. I also handle Education Law cases (special education issues and school disciplinary cases at the K-12 level, including IEP disputes, due process hearings, state complaints, expulsion hearings, manifestation hearings, and disputes involving 504 plan implementation), and appeals for veterans when their VA benefits have been denied. I handle cases throughout the Denver metro area and am willing to handle cases in other parts of Colorado as well.
My Philosophy: I believe that when issues arise, it is in everyone’s best interests to attempt to resolve these issues through good-faith discussions and negotiations. Not only is this generally less expensive than going through lengthy court proceedings; it also gives the parties more direct control over the outcome of the case and more freedom to devise solutions that are in everyone’s best interests. However, I’m also experienced enough to recognize that some parties either don’t care about the well-being of the other party, or actively want to harm the other party, regardless of the effect that such actions have on the long-term interests of all involved, including themselves. There are also some situations where there simply isn’t enough common ground between the parties for a successful resolution outside of more formal proceedings. If you are dealing with a person that is using a “scorched earth” approach in your dispute, I am extremely willing and able to protect your interests and shield you from these tactics. However, if you are interested in taking such an approach yourself, I am probably not the attorney for you.
Generally speaking, there are many steps that should be considered prior to filing for a divorce or legal separation. The ideal starting point would be honest, heartfelt discussions between the parties about issues within the relationship. Seeking outside assistance from a marriage counselor or religious leader of your faith might be helpful as well. Even if these professionals are unable to help you salvage the marriage, they can at the very least assist you in managing the emotions that you will feel in this process in an appropriate fashion. These are very real feelings that if allowed to spiral out of control will hinder your ability to act in your best interests and will also have a very negative impact on your children, and learning how to deal with them is critical to the success of your case and the future of your family. Obviously the steps I’ve described above aren’t appropriate in every case, and if you are in a situation that is unsafe for you and/or your children, you need to take any necessary steps to get out of that situation.
Once you conclude that a divorce or separation is inevitable, there are things that must be done to protect yourself during this process. Getting immediate assistance from an attorney is critical at this juncture, as a legal professional can help you determine what course of action is appropriate, and can also help you to avoid taking steps that could come back to haunt you later on in the process. Getting advice during the divorce process is very easy – everyone is more than willing to tell you what you should or shouldn’t do. However, much of this advice, while well-intentioned, is completely wrong. Each situation is different, and the experiences of others may well not be applicable in your case. Obviously you want your attorney to be competent to handle your case, but you also need to select someone that you have a high degree of comfort with. The two of you will be working together in a very highly-charged situation, and if you can’t get along or you have no trust in them, nothing positive will come from this relationship.
I believe that it is in everyone’s best interests to be proactive rather than reactive. Everyone is better off when issues are addressed openly and honestly up front, so that relatively small issues don’t become large, insurmountable issues. Issues don’t resolve themselves – they can’t simply be wished away.