Do I need a divorce attorney is a question I hear often and I always attempt to impress on people the importance of retaining a divorce attorney to protect your legal rights during the divorce process. I know however that there are circumstances that make it impossible to hire a divorce attorney.
In such cases it is possible to divorce without the benefit of an attorney. Doing so means familiarizing yourself with your state’s divorce laws, your counties court procedures and filing and following through with all paperwork associated with your divorce.
Below you will find the benefits associated with either hiring a divorce attorney or getting your divorce as a Pro Se Litigant.
Benefits of Hiring a Divorce Attorney:
- A divorce attorney knows divorce law and stays up to date on changes in divorce law.
- A divorce attorney knows how and when to file petitions and motions with the court.
- A divorce attorney has experience negotiating such issues as property division, spousal support and child custody.
- A divorce attorney knows local judges and attorneys and if familiar with local court procedure.
Benefits of Divorce Without an Attorney:
- By going Pro Se during your divorce you save the cost of hiring a divorce attorney.
- You retain more control over the direction your case goes in.
- You are aware of everything filed with the courts and have one on one contact with your spouse’s divorce attorney.
As you can see there are benefits to both hiring a divorce attorney or handling your divorce without one. I’ve done both and fared well on my own without an attorney. Being a Pro Se Litigant in family court is not a choice I would make again though. It takes hours of work and focus, is very stressful and the last thing you need during such a time is more stress.
I suggest you hire an attorney if you have the financial resources but make sure you hire a divorce attorney who is invested in protecting you and your legal rights during the divorce process.