Given that divorce has a reputation for being very expensive, it’s little surprise that many people prioritize keeping the costs of their divorce as low as possible. Unfortunately, the desire to be frugal can lead people to make decisions that truly will not benefit them in the long run, such as deciding not to hire an attorney to represent them.
On the surface, choosing not to hire an attorney as part of a litigated divorce may seem like an efficient way to reduce the costs of a divorce. In reality, eshewing legal guidance could mean putting yourself in an unfavorable position. You could make mistakes that cost you more or even lose out on assets and support you deserve.
Additionally, working with an attorney can have certain benefits, including potentially helping you speed up a divorce, thereby making it more affordable.
Your lawyer can help you follow the law and keep your expectations reasonable
Everyone has heard some exaggerated story about how someone’s divorce totally ruined their life. Some people will develop unhealthy and unrealistic expectations about the outcome of their divorce simply because of the rumors they have heard. Your lawyer can help you avoid fighting for terms in court that will never receive approval.
They can advise you about likely outcomes as well so that you can develop a reasonable strategy. Additionally, your lawyer can review every piece of documentation and paperwork related to your divorce, thereby helping you avoid both silly mistakes and violations of state law.
Lawyers can help you keep your emotions in check
Given that divorce involves the dissolution of the most intimate relationship in your life, it often comes with significant emotional baggage. Even if you feel calm about things initially, your perspective may change as time goes on. Your lawyer will not have an emotional investment in the outcome of the divorce, other than their desire to do what’s best for you. That means they can keep a clear head and help you make rational decisions that will allow for a faster divorce.
In some cases, your attorney could help you negotiate directly with your ex, either through their lawyer or via mediation, and set terms for your divorce that allow you to file for uncontested proceedings. In short, a lawyer helps you avoid mistakes, stay focused on the big picture and secure the best possible outcome.