The True Cost of Divorce

Posted on August 17, 2015 in Finances

If you fear the financial burden of facing a divorce, you are not alone. Divorce is a daunting experience, one that can feel like an insult to injury when reconciling the end of your marriage. Fortunately, many of the costs that accrue during a divorce depend on the relationship that still exists between former couples. Divorce can prove costly in less-than-ideal situations, when couples have to work out custody arrangements and split up assets. For those couples that are still on good speaking terms, a compromise often arises without the stress of excessive of legal fees.

Assets and Debt

Some couples may have a more expensive divorce simply because they have more assets and debts to consider. Those who have retirement accounts, more than one home, or business assets, may need to spend ample time in the courtroom in order to come to a fair agreement. These cases are far more complex for lawyers to argue, and state laws regarding the treatment of the assets may further complicate the situation.

Attorneys

The attorney each member of the former couple chooses can make a big impact on how much is spent on the divorce. The expense of a great divorce attorney varies widely. Some are more expensive than others, but can offer the extra value to more than compensate for higher per hour fees. It is important to look into how much each attorney is going to charge per hour before making a choice. The key is to find a lawyer who makes you feel comfortable and charges a rate that is in line with the value that attorney can offer.

Avoid Court

Those who really want to save a lot of money should try to keep their divorce out of court entirely. Choosing a mediator or a collaborative lawyer can greatly reduce costs. This is the best option for a civil divorce where the former couple is still in good standing and will be able to agree on the terms of their divorce pretty easily. When this occurs, a divorce settlement can be drafted quickly with each party able to go on his or her separate way without having a long and expensive divorce.

Each situation is different, so be sure to talk to a lawyer about your options before deciding which choice is best for you. While most people try to avoid a long and hard divorce because of the stress it brings, it is also important to make sure that a settlement is reached that works for you.

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