Many people going through a divorce or child custody case think that their lawyer will keep all of their records of who, what, when, why & where. That's what you are paying them for, isn't it? The answer is NO. Your attorney is probably handling anywhere from 20-30 cases a week and will not be able to keep track of your day-to-day happenings without your help. Attorneys advise their clients in certain legal matters like marriage dissolution or child custody cases to keep a journal of daily events & activities. But did you know that most journals do not offer the necessary security to protect your entries from being subpoenaed by opposing counsel? With Partner Diary, (www.partnerdiary.com) all entries are protected by attorney/client privilege and are designed to allow entries to be admissible in court ONLY with your approval.

It is your responsibility to document daily happenings no matter what type of case you are in, whether it is any type of divorce or child custody case or if you are just preparing documentation for a future court date. It can sometimes take years for a divorce or child custody case to be finalized and in some cases you may end up back in court after the finalization for amendments. You may be required to refer back to a certain date or occurrence therefore it is absolutely necessary that you keep daily records. Remember to write in your journal daily. We all believe that we can remember facts days later, but the truth is that if it isn’t written down immediately, critical details are forgotten.

When you are documenting events, you must remember that there actually are two sides to each story…yours and your ex’s. Human nature often encourages people to elaborate on the truth – to stretch it out a bit. This is something to watch out for when you are writing in your journal. Document events clearly and with facts. Do not elaborate to make your ex seem worse, or to make yourself seem better. Embellishing instances will damage your trust not only with your lawyer, but also with the judge. Keeping an honest journal can allow your attorney to provide facts to the judge and may help tip the scales in your favor.
Which leads to another very important piece of advice…document the bad times but also remember to document the good too. Writing down funny things your children say, taking your children to the park to play, having friends spend the night, creating art together, or just watching TV on the sofa are all good things that should be documented. They show interaction with your children: what you did, where you went, who you were with, and how long you spent with them. In addition, you want to show the judge that you are not just documenting events to simply bad-mouth your ex.

You will need to document dates, places, times, names of people involved, and keep a record of photographs if possible. A secure journal may also be a good place to store financial information, receipts, and other records needed during and after your divorce.

Remember, the key is to have vital information at your fingertips – you never know when a request will be made to provide such information to your attorney, opposing counsel, the guardian ad litem, or the judge.

Author's Bio: 

Dana McIntyre is a busy mother of three kids, wife to a hard working software programmer, and still has time to enjoy two of her favorite activities – camping and triathlons. Born and raised in Atlanta, Dana holds a GA Real Estate License and has extended her sales capabilities by marketing Partner Diary, the most recent software program created by Wink Software.