Splitting up is already hard as it is, but all the legal matters make it worse. To soothe things over and have your interests defended, you need the help of a professional divorce attorney. In this article, you’ll figure out if you need a lawyer, you’ll learn how to choose one and you’ll get invaluable advice from law pros.
Do I need a divorce attorney?
Most instances require you to go to court with a divorce attorney, since the professional will be in charge of defending your personal interests in the divorce contest. However, if you qualify for an uncontested divorce, you have the opportunity to represent yourself and save quite a lot of money on legal fees. The requirements for an uncontested divorce are:
- No minor children
- No marital assets
- No big income disparity
How to choose a divorce attorney
For your own peace of mind, it’s best to be picky when selecting a lawyer for your divorce. To save yourself from disappointment, try to follow this checklist:
- Has experience in your court system
- Has experience in family law
- Has a legal fee that’s accessible to you
Before deciding on any lawyer, ask about the frequency with which you’ll receive invoices with fees and expenses. You should also insist on signing a contract with all the specifics.
|Try to find a divorce attorney that comes with a personal reference.
Top advice from divorce attorneys
#1- Don’t hide money: After the divorce process has started, don’t even try to move money from one account to another. That also includes selling properties and liquidating your accounts. You put yourself at risk of being held in contempt which could mean paying a fine or going to jail.
#2- Don’t serve your spouse in public: Yes, you’re probably both hot under the collar, but doing things out of spite could backfire. Think it this way: wouldn’t you be more reluctant to negotiate with someone who made you an object of ridicule? Exactly.
#3- Try to settle things out of the courtroom: It will save you big bucks and help you avoid any more conflict. Your attorney should support you in this decision, if he or she tries to make you go to trial, ask for a second opinion.
#4- Have reasonable expectations: Before establishing your goals, you need to have certain knowledge of the law that applies to your case. Ask your divorce attorney about the possible outcomes of the divorce to help you set sensible goals.
Before getting married…
Consider signing a prenuptial agreement, also known as ‘prenup’. This is a contract you enter into before getting married with the aim of protecting your separate property from being subject of contest in the divorce. Plus, it will save you money on legal fees for divorce attorneys, since if you have less things in dispute, the divorce process will take less time.
Divorces are quite draining but, hopefully, with the right professional, you’ll be able to resolve it as peacefully as possible. Remember to follow the checklist!