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The Short Version: The American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) is a not-for-profit association populated by Fellows who focus on the practice of family law. AAML Fellows are highly qualified lawyers who aspire to the values of excellence, professionalism, and scholarship in the practice of family law, including divorce. Through counsel and genuine support, Fellows of the AAML continue to impact the lives of many individuals and families. There is no divorce too ugly, nor any family obstacle too big for the AAML members to help overcome.
Divorce is never something that people wish upon themselves or ever foresee when they’re on the altar saying, “I do.” It’s an unfortunate reality that many people in the world have to face. Thanks to Fellows of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML), people who are going through a hard time in their relationship or want a divorce can seek counsel from hard-working professionals who have their best interests at heart.
AAML was founded in 1962 with a mission to elevate the study and improve the practice of family law. Throughout the years, AAML has remained true to its focus on excellence, professionalism, scholarship, and innovation in the practice of family law. AAML is composed of family law attorneys with high credentials.
Family law was always a passion for Cary J. Mogerman, the current president of AAML. Cary is a St. Louis marital and family law attorney with over 30 years of experience. He is a principal with the firm of Carmody MacDonald PC, which has 55 attorneys in its employ. The caliber of lawyers in the AAML has established the Academy as a center of professional knowledge in family law, and the AAML emphasizes excellence because clients deserve just that. AAML members must have at least 10 years of family law experience before they are eligible to join.
Cary told us that AAML has nearly 1,500 members around the United States and is still expanding today. Those individuals looking for an amicable divorce or needing counsel during a bump in their relationship can find AAML quite useful.
AAML is a great resource to help you along the way when you’re looking for an attorney to assist you through a divorce. Working with experts in therapy, business valuation, etc., the members of the AAML are all about improving the lives of family lawyers and their clients. Divorces are hard, so it’s important to have a lawyer who will be able to put in compassionate and competent work to get the job done.
“Divorce is an unfortunate reality experienced by half of all families. The chances of proceeding respectfully and amicably increase depending upon your choice of representation,” said Cary.
Another focus for AAML members is in helping people make prenuptial and postnuptial agreements. No one wants to think that their marriage is going to end when it’s about to start, but it’s a safety precaution that a lot of people should consider. Cary told us that AAML doesn’t encourage every couple to consider prenups. Instead, he said that it depends on their circumstances.
If they decide to get a prenup, Cary advises couples to make sure they work with a lawyer who can draft a well-crafted prenup. He said that people who put little thought into what their prenup should provide shouldn’t bother having one. Having a bad prenup may be worse than not having one at all.
Finding the right lawyer is important because it can make all the difference throughout the divorce process. There are a lot of emotions that arise and at times they can take over you. You need a lawyer who will be able to ground you and guide you through every step of the way.
When looking for a lawyer, Cary suggests people have a confidential consultation with potential lawyers to see if they’re a right fit for their situation. There are certain things to consider when meeting with lawyers such as their approach, personality, and care for your situation. No one wants to hire a lawyer who doesn’t know how to help you with your situation. Getting to know and talking to your lawyer about the legal implications of your situation can be enlightening, and it may provide clarity for the way forward for yourself and your family.
People must know their legal rights and obligations as it pertains to their marriage. Without the proper coaching, some people may end up doing things that can harm them in the end. A good lawyer will provide you with the proper information and help you understand what’s at stake.
“Sometimes the problems in a marriage cannot be solved by being divorced, and people who learn that to be the case may choose not to be divorced,” said Cary.
Although divorces are known to be ugly and life-changing, there are many cases where it can be a positive situation for both partners. Sometimes people change and they realize that their lifestyles are no longer compatible — and that’s OK! A lawyer who can express this possibility and encourage their client that they will reach this goal is the kind of lawyer someone contemplating divorce needs.
When a person is going through a divorce, AAML members aim to support them in different ways. It’s not just about getting rid of your ex-husband or ex-wife, the goal is to find a reasonable range of acceptable outcomes that work for both parties.
Divorce is a life-altering decision and should be a decision a person arrives at after much thought and consideration. Cary told us that even though a lawyer in the AAML is a supportive resource, people should consult with a confidante who will serve as a trusted individual or advisor for them throughout.
The COVID-19 pandemic added another stress point for couples and relationships in general. During this time of quarantine, some couples realized that being together wasn’t for the best. Members of the AAML do their very best to help clients through challenging and stressful situations, so individuals needn’t tackle these challenges alone.
“Many successfully married couples have survived existentially challenging periods and trouble in earlier days and emerged happily married for years. I’m sure many are happy they chose to remain married. However, obtaining a divorce is the legal method for ending the untenable. Life is short, and if the marriage cannot work, it can be ended. It should not be a life sentence!” Cary told us.