In our 40th Episode, Greg and Marlene interview Erin Levine, an attorney and founder/CEO of Hello Divorce, a service that makes divorce more human and accessible by offering legal help and wellness support throughout the process of dissolving a marriage. Offered in California, Hello Divorce offers access to resources and tools and different service levels, from basic to concierge to a la carte access to independent fixed fee attorneys. Erin highlights that the legal process can be confusing, dis-empowering and expensive and that Hello Divorce is a necessary guide to help people navigate the system in a way that doesn’t destroy them financially and emotionally. While divorce representation is a consistent legal need, Erin highlights that there are many other parts of the process that are also necessary which don’t require attorney skills. She leverages various forms of process improvement including outsourcing, automation, smart contracts to make the service application scalable.
Part of what is interesting about the discussion (and there are lots of interesting parts) is that Erin stands the idea of aggressive and hostile divorce action on its head. While Erin has critics, she maintains the benefit of taking down level of tension and fear between the parties. In fact, 92% of divorces started with hello Divorce have concluded without having to refer out to full rep attorneys. (10:17 mark)
According to Aliqae Geraci from Cornell and Shannon L. Farrell from University of Minnesota wrote an article entitled “Normalize Negotiations!” we teach librarians a lot about management skills, but we’ve lacked in teaching them basic skills like salary and promotion negotiation skills. There is a place for the American Library Association (ALA) and the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) to teach their members these skills. (4:05 mark)