A long medical malpractice, auto accident or strict products liability case can be draining for a plaintiff. If you anticipate filing a lawsuit that could take months or years to resolve, it is important for you to consider the impact of the lawsuit on your livelihood and family life.
Your family members will undoubtedly be affected if you are missing time away from them due to attorney meetings, in-court appearances or other case needs. Here are some ways that you can prepare your family members for the consequences of a long lawsuit and make the experience into an educational, positive one rather than a negative one.
1. Be upfront and honest in explaining the situation to children.
First off, it is important for you to be upfront and honest with your children. If you hide the fact that you are involved in a lawsuit from your children, then they may sense the stress and be impacted by it in their school and personal lives. Discuss the fact that you will need to be away for the next few months to work with lawyers to solve a problem. This is a positive manner of addressing the problem and also preparing your children for what is to come.
2. Hire a baby-sitter for case commitments away from home.
Given you hire or ask for help from someone your kids know and love, children typically love hanging out with a baby-sitter when parents are away. You can make your time away from home something that the kids look forward to and enjoy. Make sure that the baby-sitter has fun activities planned or movies to watch with the children so that they can enjoy it.
3. Encourage the interest that your children show in the legal process, and teach them about the functions of the legal justice system.
If your kids are older and have questions about the lawsuit, use this as a time to encourage their interest in legal matters. Your kids may even feel inspired to pursue a degree in criminal justice or even become a lawyer after learning about the legal system.
4. Plan a “reward night” after difficult or stressful weeks for the family to come together and enjoy.
When times get tough, planning a “reward night” is one way to give the family an experience to uplift them. You can even make a big deal out of it by placing it on the family calendar and allowing each person to have a “vote” in what happens on family night. Perhaps you go to see a movie together as a family, go skating, go to a nice restaurant or do some other fun activity for bonding time.
Researching and finding a reliable law firm can help you mentally prepare for the challenges associated with a lengthy lawsuit. Feel free to contact our attorneys at any time to receive an initial consultation for your case.