Getting a divorce can be devastating enough. Having to foot the bill for lawyer’s fees and other costs after splitting assets in half can leave someone in financial ruin.
Even if you opt for a DIY divorce (which is not recommended), you can still expect to pay a lot of money out of pocket. The average divorce costs roughly $15,500. While many divorces cost even more than that, some cost even less. In a lot of ways, you can dictate the cost of your divorce. You do not have to fight with your spouse in court. By compromising and keeping an open mind, you can finalize your divorce quickly without breaking the bank.
Want to save money in your divorce? Keep more money in your pocket by following these tips.
Find out What is Important to You
What are your goals in the divorce? What kind of outcome are you expecting? These are questions to keep in mind as you go through the divorce process. You are not going to get everything you want in a divorce, so do not believe an attorney who promises you otherwise. Your attorney should work hard to help you achieve a fair outcome, but you need to figure out what is most important to you. Is there a specific asset you want to keep? Are you willing to do what it takes to stay in the marital home? Do you want primary custody of the kids? Is it important that you have retirement money?
Your lawyer can help you fight for the things that are important to you. Hopefully, by discussing this with your spouse, as well, you two can compromise and come to a fair agreement. This will reduce your divorce costs even more.
Typically, the longer a divorce drags on, the more you will incur in attorney costs. Longer cases can take a year or longer to resolve and end up with huge lawyer bills. These cases are highly contentious with a lot of conflict involved. You want to avoid this, especially if you have children.
In a divorce, cooperation goes a long way. You may not be happy that you are getting a divorce, but creating conflict and being nasty toward your spouse does nothing to help the situation. All it does it make matters worse. It makes your spouse even more upset and delays the process, which ends up costing you more in the long run. Plus, if children are involved, it creates more stress, since you are battling with their other parent. No child wants to see his or her parents go to war with each other.
By being amicable toward your spouse, he or she is more likely to give you what you want or at least make compromises. Plus, it sets a good example for the children. It shows you are a mature human being, and that goes a long way in a divorce.
You can save money by choosing your own divorce, and the best one to choose is mediation. Mediation keeps you out of the courtroom, so it is a great way to save money. It is much cheaper than having a judge decide on the most important issues you are facing in a divorce.
In mediation, you and your spouse negotiate on issues in a divorce, such as property division, child custody and alimony. You both come to an agreement on your own. A mediator is there to help you along and answer any questions you have, but a mediator does not give legal advice or make any decisions. The couple communicates together and makes their own decisions, eliminating the need for litigation. You could save thousands of dollars by taking this route.
Be Organized and Efficient
Ask your attorney what he or she needs to work on your divorce ahead of time. Your lawyer’s time is your money, so try to stay organized and do a portion of the work yourself. For example, a lawyer will need pay stubs, bank statements, and loan documents. While getting all this paperwork can be a daunting task, if you are able to take the time to gather this information yourself, you will save hundreds of dollars in lawyer fees.
Try to Salvage Your Marriage
Even the friendliest divorce can be costly, so the best way to save money is to not get divorced at all. If there is any way to save your marriage, it is worth a try. Even counseling is cheaper than divorce. If you still love your spouse and are willing to put some effort into fixing the problems in your marriage, then try to communicate with him or her. You could start by discussing the biggest problems in the marriage and figuring out solutions together. If you can accomplish that together, then perhaps you can take divorce off the table.
Seek Legal Help
Divorces are not only emotionally tasking but financially draining, as well. While a divorce can be costly, there are options available so you can cut costs. You do not have to drag your spouse through a lengthy trial.
Need to get your finances under control after a divorce? Discuss your budget with Palm Beach divorce attorney Scott J. Stadler. He can advise you of your options so you can avoid paying too much. If you can put aside your differences and cooperate with your spouse, you can get your divorce resolved quickly and inexpensively. Schedule a consultation with our office today by calling (954) 346-6464.