Mackall, Crounse & Moore, PLC has joined Dewitt Ross & Stevens S.C.

The newly formed DeWitt Mackall Crounse & Moore S.C. will provide clients with enhanced legal services
and efficiencies as well as access to more than 100 attorneys practicing in nearly 30 areas of
law in Wisconsin and Minnesota.

Dismiss this message

×

Do I need an attorney?

You are not required to have an attorney to represent you, and where appropriate, our attorneys may advise you that your situation is one that may not benefit from hiring an attorney. However, most people find the assistance of an attorney helpful and in many cases, necessary. This is especially true in matters related to your family, your children, and your business. When issues hit that close to home, having experienced counsel can be invaluable.

Back to Top


Can my spouse and I jointly hire an attorney?

Attorneys are not permitted to represent both sides of a case – including both sides in a family law issue – even if you believe that you have agreed on most issues. However, both parties could hire one of our attorneys to act as a mediator or arbitrator in their family law matter. Also, many times our attorneys represent one party and the other party chooses not to be represented as we negotiate the terms of an agreement. If that is the case, we encourage the unrepresented party to seek counsel to review the final agreement on their behalf to ensure that the agreement we have reached is reasonable under the law.

Back to Top


What is Mediation and Arbitration?

Mediation and arbitration are dispute resolution procedures that help people negotiate resolutions without having a judge decide all or part of your case. Sometimes an entire case is mediated from start to finish, and other times we use mediation to resolve particular sticking points in a case. Our lawyers are skilled and experienced mediators who are frequently called on to help resolve disputes. Additionally, where appropriate, we use mediation as a tool to assist our clients. Mediation is a confidential process and communications during mediation may not be disclosed in future court proceedings. This confidentiality helps people make good faith offers to resolve cases, while still retaining the right to proceed in court if necessary.

The difference between mediation and arbitration is that if parties are unable to reach an agreement in mediation, they can continue to present the dispute to a judge or court commissioner for a decision. In arbitration, the parties agree that the arbitrator will be permitted to reach a decision and with extremely rare exceptions, that decision will be legally binding. Sometimes we combine the two concepts in what is referred to as “med-arb” which means we are agreeing to mediate a case, but if at the end of mediation there is no resolution, the process switch to arbitration, and the mediator will be permitted to make legally-binding decisions.

Back to Top


What is Collaborative Divorce?

Collaborative Divorce is a specific process under which the parties and attorneys agree to forego the right to present issues of dispute to a court commissioner or judge for a decision, and requires the attorneys to resign from representing their clients if the clients are unable to reach full agreement on all issues related to their divorce. Parties and counsel commit in writing to meet collaboratively and to hire other professionals (financial advisors, child specialists, etc.) jointly to try to resolve their disputes.

While our attorneys are trained in Collaborative Divorce and utilize this approach when requested and when appropriate, we caution that not all cases benefit from this approach. If there are any issues of abuse (whether physical or verbal) or any issues of a significant power imbalance (e.g. substantial income disparity) then the collaborative approach is unlikely to be appropriate.

If you are interested in discussing whether your situation could benefit from using the Collaborative Divorce model, our attorneys are experienced in assessing the circumstances and advising you on this decision.

Back to Top


What is the difference between Legal Separation and Divorce?

The procedures for pursuing a legal separation and a divorce are almost identical, with limited exceptions. We address the same issues in a legal separation as we do in divorce (property division, support, issues regarding children). Some people choose legal separation rather than divorce for religious reasons. However, a key legal difference between legal separation and divorce is that in most cases, parties can retain their family health insurance coverage after a legal separation, and then cannot do so after a divorce. This can be an important issue if one party does not have health insurance available through employment. There are some additional benefits and drawbacks to legal separation versus a divorce, and our attorney will discuss those in detail during your initial consultation.

Back to Top


I don’t live near Madison, Milwaukee or Minneapolis. Should I still hire an attorney from DeWitt?

Maybe. Our attorneys have an extensive network of trusted legal professionals throughout Wisconsin and Minnesota. We frequently refer potential clients to these trusted attorneys when we know they can represent you just as well as we can. However, our attorneys have state-wide practices and when appropriate, take cases in many different counties.

Because we offer experience and resources that most family law attorneys simply do not have, we are often called on to represent high net-worth individuals or people who own their own businesses throughout the state. Occasionally we act as co-counsel or advisors to local attorneys to help resolve complex disputes while they focus on the less-complex, but equally important aspects of the case.

We understand complex tax issues, business issues and legal issues, and have both the experience and the creativity to resolve complex cases efficiently and effectively. Just as importantly, we have the skills and experienced to present your case to a judge who may have never had the occasion to deal with such complex issues.

Back to Top


I want to appeal a decision a judge made. Do you do appeals?

Yes, we have represented clients in appeals to the court of appeals and to the Wisconsin Supreme Court. It is very important to know that appeals have very tight mandatory timelines that must be followed or your right to appeal will be dismissed. If you believe you received a bad decision or a judge made an error in a case, it is very important to contact us as soon as possible so that we may evaluate your case and if appropriate, file an appeal in time to meet those deadlines.

Back to Top


How much is this going to cost?

No one can predict with certainty how much a legal action is going to cost, though in some cases, such as adoption, we may offer a flat fee agreement. However, internet rumors that “the average divorce costs each side $40,000” are incorrect and absurd.

At Dewitt, we have several cost-saving measures such as paralegals who can provide many services at a substantially-lower rate than attorneys. Unlike many firms, we don’t tack on an “office supplies” fee or charge you for stamps.

When you consult with one of our attorneys, we will assess your situation and give you our best estimate of a reasonable range of potential costs for your case, with the caveat that sometimes unpredictable issues may arise. One of the most unpredictable aspects of a case is how the other side is going to act. Our experience and reputation as tough litigators but reasonable negotiators often leads to fully-negotiated resolutions of your case from start to finish. While we do try to resolve cases amicably and efficiently, if we do take your case to trial, rest assured that you will receive excellent courtroom representation.

Back to Top

Our Locations

Madison

2 East Mifflin Street, Suite 600
Madison, WI 53703
(608) 255-8891
Get Directions

Greater Milwaukee

13845 Bishop’s Drive, Suite 300
Brookfield, WI 53005
(262) 754-2840
Get Directions

Minneapolis

2100 AT&T Tower,
901 Marquette Avenue
Minneapolis, MN 55402
(612) 305-1400
Get Directions


Get to know us

DeWitt LLP is one of the ten largest law firms based in Wisconsin, with an additional presence in Minnesota. It has nearly 140 attorneys practicing in Madison, Metropolitan Milwaukee and Minneapolis in over 30 legal practice areas, and has the experience to service clients of all scopes and sizes.

Our People
Our Law Firm
Leadership
Areas of Expertise
News & Education
Contact Us

Partners

We are an active and proud member of Lexwork International, an association of mid-sized independent law firms in major cities located throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia and an active member of SCG Legal, an association of more than 140 independent law firms serving businesses in all 50 state capitals and major commercial centers around the world.

Awards

Best Lawyers 2013 – 2018
Compass Award 2012
Top 100 Lawyers: National Trial Lawyers Association

  • blf-badge-2016
  • blf-badge-2017
  • Ramac Member Logo
  • blf-badge-2018
  • BLF-Badge-2019

NOTICE

While we would like to hear from you, we cannot represent you until we know that doing so will not create a conflict of interest. Accordingly, please do not send us any information about any matter that may involve you until you receive a written statement from us that we represent you (an “engagement letter”). You will not be a client of the firm until you receive such an engagement letter.

The best way for you to initiate a possible representation is to call DeWitt Ross & Stevens at 608-255-8891. We will make every effort to put you in touch with a lawyer suited to handle your matter. When you receive an engagement letter from one of our lawyers, you will be our client and we may exchange information freely.

Please click the “OK” button if you understand and accept the foregoing statement and wish to proceed.