Divorce is messy, complicated, and expensive. If you or your soon-to-be ex-spouse have financial assets or children, your divorce may involve a legal and financial battle that can last for years. Most people find the process to be extremely confusing, emotional, and overwhelming, but an experienced divorce lawyer can help you make it out alive. Here are the top five reasons to hire a divorce attorney:
1. You don’t know how to complete the paperwork.
Divorce involves more paperwork than you could possibly imagine. If you accidentally omit or misrepresent something on the paperwork, the repercussions will be severe. An experienced family law attorney knows how to handle the paperwork correctly and persuasively, thus potentially avoiding disaster.
2. You’re an emotional wreck.
Divorce can be like an emotional roller-coaster. An objective attorney can help you see clearly and use logic, rather than emotions, to drive your decision-making process.
3. Your finances are a mess.
Divorce usually involves a detailed financial accounting to identify the parties’ assets and financial needs. The accounting requires careful review of bank statements, credit card statements, stocks, retirement plans, deeds, mortgages, car loans, student loans, childcare expenses, household bills, and more. An attorney can help organize and review these documents so your head isn’t left spinning.
4. You don’t know your options.
A divorce lawyer can survey your situation and recommend the best options for you. For example, an experienced attorney can help you identify a fair settlement demand or reasonable counteroffer. An experienced lawyer can also advise you about your chances of prevailing in court.
5. You are unfamiliar with the law.
If you’re considering representing yourself, understand that the judge will not make exceptions for you. The judge is going to hold you to the same standard as a lawyer. Failure to follow the rules will test the judge’s patience and potentially damage your case. A divorce attorney, however, has the courtroom experience and expertise to handle your case appropriately and effectively.
In sum, having a divorce attorney can significantly increase your chances of success and reduce your stress. For most people, a divorce attorney is an absolute necessity. If you are on the verge of a divorce, you should definitely consider hiring an attorney.