Do You Need an Attorney for Divorce?


Your wife tells you it’s over. She can’t take being married to you even one more day, and she’s serious this time.

Do you try to convince her to settle without a lawyer or should you just stick with hiring an attorney for divorce as most people do?

This is a decision many couples today face and it’s a big decision. You’ll want to make sure you choose the best option.

If you want to know the best answer for your situation, let’s explore the options you have and the biggest factors you should analyze as you make this huge decision.

You Might Not Need an Attorney for Divorce if…

Let’s say you’ve only been married a few months and have no joint assets, no kids, and virtually no debts. When you split up, what decisions would you need to make?

If you have nothing, there would be nothing to fight about. What would you have to lose?

Getting divorced without an attorney is probably not a bad idea in this case.

You Would Probably Need an Attorney if…

Now, let’s say you’ve been married for a while and have a house. Let’s say you also have some cars, car payments, credit card bills, and medical bills.

Let’s also say you have 1.9 children (okay so this might be an exaggeration, but it is the average amount of children people in the U.S. had in 2018.)

The point is that you and your wife have joint things.

When you share things like the ones listed here, a divorce tends to be a little more complicated. In fact, divorces with a lot of “things” can be A LOT more complicated.

If this is closer to your situation, hiring an attorney is usually the better option for several reasons:

  1. To learn your rights, responsibilities, and steps in the process
  2. To have someone help you split assets and debts fairly and legally
  3. To create the best agreement for child support and visitation

The downside to using an attorney for your divorce is the costs. On average, it costs between $15,000 to $30,000 in legal fees for a divorce.

There Are Alternative Ways to Consider

If a do-it-yourself divorce doesn’t seem like the best way and if you really don’t want to pay for the cost of a lawyer, there are alternative options.

The first alternative option is a collaborative divorce, and you might pay around $7,500 for this type.

A collaborative divorce still requires each of you to hire an attorney. All four of you then work together to try to settle all the issues quickly.

The second alternative option is divorce mediation. The costs vary when using mediation but you could likely pay just $1,200 for it. This method doesn’t require hiring an attorney. Instead, you hire a mediator for help making the decisions.

A Smart Way to Decide What You Should Do

Now that you understand the biggest factors to consider when making the decision as to whether you need an attorney for a divorce or not, there is one more thing you can do that could help.

Visit a law firm that offers divorce services.

A visit to a divorce attorney will not obligate you to hire him or her but can give you some additional information to help you make the best and most informed decision for YOU!

Jeff Campbell

Jeff Campbell is a husband, father, martial artist, budget-master, Disney-addict, musician, and recovering foodie having spent over 2 decades as a leader for Whole Foods Market. Click to learn more about me

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