There are so many mistakes that you can make during a messy divorce that can land you in a position where you might feel that bankruptcy is the only way out. Divorces are expense and attorney and expert fees can rack up quickly costing you thousands. The sad thing is that in many cases, you might be expected to continually pay more out while your ex is able to get away with little to no representation. There are some things that you can do to avoid becoming bankrupt when you are going through a divorce.
Know Who Your Lawyer is Working For
In far too many cases, clients end up with attorneys who do not seem to really be working as hard as they can for them. In these cases, you can end up with continuing legal bills and fees and no real chance to have the money that you deserve to take care of your problems. When you are going through a divorce, make sure that you budget out what you can afford for legal fees. If you are going to be going through a lengthy trial, try to find ways that you can cut costs by doing research or providing paperwork for your attorney that will help speed along the process and end up costing you thousands less. Be open and honest with your attorney about what you can afford and what you are willing to pay out of your pocket.
If you notice that your attorney starts asking for more money before delivering results, make sure that you are open and honest and have a talk with them. Explain what you were promised during your consultations and discuss outcomes so far vs what you were expecting for money that had been previously paid. Ask them for a detailed breakdown of every invoice. Keeping your lawyer in check is important to ensure that he is really working his best for you. You can also ensure that you end up in a divorced situation and that you end up with what you are expecting from your attorney.
Don’t Be Afraid of Second Opinions
One of the biggest mistakes that people make when going through a divorce is that they do not seek out second opinions from attorneys or anyone else. Make sure that you are willing to look for what you want by seeking out an attorney that might be a better match than your first. Choosing the right attorney can be scary since retainers typically run in the thousands and if you are trying to avoid bankruptcy then you are going to want to find someone who is going to be affordable and willing to help you.
Consider Legal Aid
If you do not have a steady income or if you are not making a considerable amount of money, then you are going to want to consider checking out what might be available to you from legal aid. In many cases, legal aid is available to help those who do not have a lot of money so that they do not go broke trying to afford legal fees. Sometimes legal aid will not accept cases that are going to require a ton of ground work or additional help so make sure that you are really looking at the big picture of what you need when you are going through your divorce. If you do not need to fight over something, don’t. Choosing to simplify your requests can help you to get an attorney that is going to be more affordable and cost friendly for you.
Consider Legal Aid a Family Advocacy Program
If you prefer not to hire an attorney and you don’t qualify for legal aid, another option is to go through a low cost family law service. Programs such as National Family Solutions have a nationwide network of attorneys and Legal Documents Assistants that prepared all the necessary documents for family law cases and guide you through the filing, serving and representation process. Choosing an option such as this could help you save thousands of dollars in retainer fees and billable hours, but you will have to be willing to do some of the legwork yourself.
In conclusion, divorces can get very expensive and they could quickly put you in a financial bind. Don’t do things out of spite to get back at the other party because you will only be hurting yourself at the end. A successful divorce isn’t always about being right. Remember to explore your option and see what’s best for you, your children and your finances.