Due to the nature of a divorce, it’s undoubtedly going to cost you some money. And while you should never try to cut corners in order to “save” on your divorce, there are a few ways you can avoid costly mistakes and make the entire process a bit more cost-effective.
1. Opt for mediation.
Divorce doesn’t have to be a contested battle, with each side trying to “win” at all costs. Mediation is a way to resolve divorce disputes that allows both parties the ability to control the outcome. Using an unbiased third party, couples can amicably discuss all aspects of their divorce, including asset division and child custody matters, until a mutual resolution is made.
The five stages of mediation include:
- Convening the Mediation. This will be the first time both parties meet with the mediator. During the first session, each couple should ask questions and get a better understanding of the rules of mediation. Both parties will also sign the mediation agreement.
- Opening Session. This is when each party can air their grievances and discuss what they hope to get out of the divorce. However, this is not a time to argue, place blame, or accuse one another.
- Communication. The mediator probes each party to ensure enough information is available to enable decision-making.
- The Negotiation. The mediator helps each party identify possible solutions to their disagreements and tries to help the disputing parties reach a mutually satisfying agreement.
- Closure. Both parties and the mediator enter the agreement they have reached in writing. If both parties can not come to a mutual agreement, mediation will be ended and alternative methods will be considered.
2. Never get a "DIY" divorce.
DIY divorces can be tempting since they seem like the most cost-effective option. However, they can ultimately lead to major problems down the road, like one party getting far less than they deserve after the divorce.
The outcome of your divorce will have a profound effect on the rest of your life. And while most people know at least one person who has undergone a divorce, the process can actually be much more complicated than you realize.
Choosing to go through the process entirely on your own can be difficult if:
- Your marriage ended due to secrecy or fighting.
- You’re unsure of your legal rights.
- You’re unfamiliar with the family legal system.
- You have children and therefore need to create a detailed custody agreement as part of your divorce.
- You have significant assets that need to be divided (a home, savings, retirement funds, investments, personal businesses, etc.).
- You feel as though you deserve spousal support.
3. Go into the process with a positive attitude.
Time is one of the biggest factors that affects the cost of a divorce — specifically, how long your divorce takes. By refusing to agree on reasonable demands or settlements, you could be harming yourself more than your soon-to-be-ex. The longer deliberations take, the longer your attorney will be working for you and the longer it will be until you can put this event behind you and move on with your life.
4. Have a good understanding of your assets.
One of the most highly contested aspects of a divorce is asset division. However, having a strong understanding of all your assets can avoid some confusion. And when it comes time to disclose your assets, always be honest. If you try to hide assets from your spouse at the beginning of your divorce, you’ll likely regret it.
5. Hire an attorney specializing in family law.
Like we said, family law matters are more complicated than many people realize. And while it may be tempting to try to do things yourself or use the most cost-effective attorney you come across, you may be jeopardizing your financial security in the future.
At Blood Law, PLLC, we believe in helping our clients achieve their goals – no matter how complex their divorce or other family law issue. Our experienced attorneys provide tailored legal services with a unique, team-based approach to do our best to achieve these results.
To learn more about our legal services, contact our Charlotte divorce lawyers online or give us a call at (704) 286-0570.