Deciding to get a divorce from your spouse is a life-changing decision; one that can have far-reaching effects on the rest of your life. So, you (or your spouse) decide to get a divorce; but what do you do next? Now you’re faced with another tough decision—to hire or not to hire an attorney. Deciding to hire an attorney is a daunting task; you have to figure out who to hire and how much it is going to cost, for starters. You may even be wondering if hiring an attorney is even worth it; people represent themselves in divorce proceedings all the time, don’t they? While appearing pro se (the legal term for representing yourself) is common in divorce cases, you should think about it like having an issue with the plumbing at your home. Sure, you could probably fix it yourself with a little help from the internet, and it may turn out okay…or the problem may end up a complete disaster, who knows? On the other hand, you could hire a plumber who will make sure that the problem is fixed quickly and effectively. The same idea applies to hiring a divorce attorney.
Here is a list of 10 reasons why you should hire a divorce attorney:
- You want someone who is on your side.
Going through a divorce is stressful; not only do you have to deal with the divorce itself, but you also have to deal with the reactions of your friends, your neighbors, your family. It can be overwhelming trying to adjust to the changes you are making in your life, and it may feel like you have no one to turn to for guidance. Having an attorney can help. A good divorce attorney will not only help you with your legal issues, he or she will also provide you with a source of support and advice to assist you with making sound decisions.
2. You want someone who can explain the law.
The law is complex and filled with tiny, important details that are easy to miss for someone who is not familiar with the law. Much of the language used in statutes and court orders have special meanings that are specific to the law and differ from their everyday usage. Hiring an attorney means that you have someone who is intimately familiar with the law that will govern your divorce. An attorney will be able to help you understand the meaning of statutes and court orders and how they apply to your situation.
3. An attorney will help ensure everything is fair.
One of the biggest concerns in divorce proceedings is fairness. The main focus of many divorces is how property or assets are going to be divided between the parties. There are also concerns about whether you or your spouse should receive alimony or who will make child support payments if necessary. Divorce attorneys deal with those concerns on a daily basis, and they know how to ensure that the dealings between the spouses remains fair.
4. You want someone to help you navigate the courts.
During a divorce, meeting deadlines, filing the correct paperwork at the right time with the right people/person, and appearing in court can be a daunting task, especially if you aren’t familiar with the process. Divorce proceedings generally follow a very structured pattern concerning what documents need to be filed by what party and when and missing a deadline or a certain document can mean the end of your case or a lot of extra work on your part. Hiring an attorney means that you don’t have to stress about what needs to be filed and when; an attorney knows what to do and when, and they make sure that all your paperwork is submitted when it needs to be. An attorney will also help you keep track of things like mediation and court dates and will even help you navigate the courthouse.
5. An attorney can help you communicate with your spouse.
Getting a divorce is stressful, whether the separation is amicable or not. Even if you and your spouse are on good speaking terms communicating with one another about the details of your divorce can be difficult and seem impossible at times. Hiring an attorney means that you have an available third-party available act as a mediator for you and communicate with your spouse.
6. To make it less emotional.
Getting a divorce is an emotionally trying time with a lot of big decisions that can affect you for years after the divorce is finalized. When you hire an attorney, you are hiring someone who can help you to take the emotion out of the huge decisions. Your attorney is someone who can make sure that you are making choices based on reasonable thought, rather than in the heat of the moment or under emotional stress.
7. To help make critical decisions.
Hiring an attorney means you have someone there for you who can help you make the difficult decisions. An experienced attorney can help you determine the best course of action in your divorce. A lawyer can provide information that you may not have known to help you consider the most effective settlement or litigation options.
8. To protect your rights.
Just because you are getting a divorce doesn’t mean that you are giving up all of your rights as well. By hiring a divorce attorney, you know that you have someone fighting for your rights. An attorney will help you make sure that your rights, like your right to timesharing, child support, and alimony, are protected during the course of your divorce.
9. To streamline the process.
The divorce process is one that can be short and simple or long and drawn out, especially if you don’t know what to expect or what to do. For someone inexperienced with the courts, getting a divorce finalized could take years, and if you or your spouse are unable to come to any agreements, well, the process could go on for quite some time. Here’s where hiring an attorney can help. A divorce attorney knows how to streamline the divorce process for you, and they know how to help you avoid long and complex litigation wherever possible.
10. One word: Paperwork.
You can’t predict many things in life with 100 percent certainty, but there is one thing you can be certain of: getting a divorce generates a lot of paperwork. Having someone who knows how to correctly fill out and file all the paperwork that a divorce generates is a blessing, and guess what: a divorce attorney knows how to do just that. Even better, by hiring a divorce attorney, not only do you avoid having to fill out all the paperwork, you don’t have to worry about filling out the wrong documents.
Getting a divorce is a big decision, but we’re here to help. Call Golden Key Law Group, PLLC at (727)-317-4738 today to schedule a free consultation.