5 Tips to Affording Your Divorce
One of the most common questions asked of a divorce lawyer is “How much is this going to cost?” While your lawyer cannot ultimately control the cost of your case, here are five tips to help ensure your divorce is as cost-efficient as possible:
- If possible, work directly with your spouse. While you will need to rely on the expertise of your lawyer for many decisions, if you can agree on collateral issues like dividing household contents, with your spouse, this will save time and expense.
- Consolidate questions and concerns. Since most lawyers bill on an hourly basis, you will be charged for each email reply, telephone call and office meeting. Keep a list of your inquiries as they arise and submit them as a group so you will not be charged for as many communications.
- Weigh cost-benefit analysis. The law provides many rights and entitlements, but there is often a cost involved with exercising those rights. Before you pursue an issue, ask your lawyer about the potential cost involved, the likelihood of success and the financial benefit to you if your claim is successful.
- Gather and provide as much information as possible (and be organized!). The discovery process, which relates to a lawyer’s ability to obtain information regarding the case, is time-consuming and expensive. The need for discovery can be minimized by your ability to assemble documentation. Presenting the data to your lawyer in an organized manner will allow for efficient review and analysis.
- Embrace your lawyer’s ability to delegate. Your lawyer might call upon others in the firm to handle certain aspects of your case. This does not mean your lawyer is not committed to you, but rather some tasks can be accomplished by another professional with a lower hourly rate.
With forethought and preplanning, you can significantly reduce the cost of your divorce and therefore keep more money for both spouses and — most importantly — for the children. Our team of Pittsburgh family law attorneys at Pollock Begg Komar Glasser & Vertz LLC works as efficiently as possible with clients and any outside professionals, even in complex cases, to ensure more money stays with the new family structure post-divorce. To discuss your case and receive the financial guidance you need to make informed decisions for your family, contact us at (412) 471-9000 or fill out our online contact form.
Joseph R. Williams, partner at Pollock Begg, maintains a comprehensive family law practice including all types of economic cases, custody and visitation, protection from abuse and support. A dynamic member of the legal community, Joe has been recognized with numerous awards for his achievements and leadership. He frequently authors for legal publications as well as mainstream media and lectures and moderates at continuing legal education seminars.