Going through a divorce was the most painful experience of my life, probably because it wasn't what I wanted. All the things that were important to me were up in the air. I didn't know what would happen to my kids--that was the worst of it. But there was more. I worked all my life to buy a nice house, put away some savings and a college fund, establish good credit. I was beside myself with anxiety.
At first I tried to represent myself, but it didn't take long to see I was out of my league. I knew I had to get a lawyer. After a great experience, one of my closest friends recommended Banas Family Law--Chris had negotiated joint custody and the kids were really thriving. They got to spend time with both parents, and nobody was being bankrupted by child support debts.
It's hard for me to overstate the difference Chris made in my life. I have a physical disability and I was worried that a judge might not understand that it has no bearing on my relationship with my kids. Chris was able to convey to everyone--including the judge and the other lawyer--that my disability doesn't define me. He met me early for hearings--he always made sure getting inside and through court security was a non-issue--and then that I had a good place to sit in the courtroom, where I could see and hear everything. He was never condescending to me, and as someone who has traveled through this world with a disability, I can tell you that is unusual. If anything, he has a terrific sense of humor, which defused some difficult situations and bitter feelings.
During the first part of the proceedings, it looked like we were going to have to go to trial. My ex was being incredibly unreasonable, insisting on exclusive custody of the kids, excessive child support, etc. Chris chipped away at this over time. He regularly contacted the other attorney and began to negotiate--I could see he didn't have any difficulty working with the other side, or even standing up to the judge when he had to. I got to read all the legal papers he drew up, and they seemed intelligent and well-written, and there were lots of references to cases and laws--which he explained to me, because I'm no lawyer!
At the same time, he prepared for trial. We went through the whole nightmare together--pretrials, depositions, mediation, you name it. Chris was always calm and reassuring when I was a wreck. He was very knowledgeable about the law and explained everything to me in a way that I could understand. I always felt fully informed about everything--not just the case, but also the way I was being billed.
In the end, we went to the courthouse on trial day, and Chris was able to settle the rest of the case without actually going to trial. I know Chris was ready for trial, but he did what was best for me. We were able to work out a fair settlement, and I never thought that would happen. Are my kids having to adjust to their new life? Sure. But they are also doing great because they get to spend so much time with both of their parents. The financial settlement was definitely a compromise--I got some of what I wanted, and I had to give in on some points. I admit it stung a bit, but it was also fair.
Chris isn't the type to toot his own horn, so I will do it for him. If you're looking for a courteous, knowledgeable, professional lawyer who isn't a cold-hearted shark, he's your man. If you're looking for a lawyer who isn't always watching the clock and waiting for the next client, but actually cares about you AND your kids, hire Chris. If you want a lawyer who won't put you in the poorhouse with exorbitant bills, call Chris. If you want someone who can try your case OR settle it, contact Chris. If you want a lawyer who knows the law, understands his way around a courtroom, and isn't afraid of anyone--hire Chris. You won't be sorry.