Do I Need a Divorce Lawyer?
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Do I Need a Divorce Lawyer?

Find out more about the way divorce lawyers work and the time you might want to hire one.

If you’re thinking about getting divorced, you may be overwhelmed with the amount of information available to you on the internet. It’s no wonder that in today’s web-driven world there are 1,000’s of blogs, self help sites, and legal assistance sites accessible to you. But what happens when you hear to the wrong advice and make mistakes when filing for your divorce? Or, what happens when you can’t comprehend your state’s divorce laws and you lose your rights to marital property through your divorce? Even though a lot of states don’t necessitate that you to hire a lawyer, often it may be the best way to safeguard your interests in a divorce.

Negotiate Your Divorce, Without an Lawyer

Even though divorce is one of the most complicated and emotional legal processes through family law, not all spouses require in-depth court help to terminate their marriage. When you both are in agreement concerning what you wish for your family, you might be able to negotiate a divorce settlement by yourselves.

When you and your spouse choose to divorce, when you are able to communicate, try to discuss each of your ideal results concerning child custody and/or visitation, child support, division of property, and spousal support. It’s no wonder that children cope a lot better after a divorce when the parents can continue to encourage a quality relationship with them and each other. If you discover that you’re in agreement and are both ready to put your agreement in writing, you might be able to save time and money by not hiring a lawyer to go to court for your case. Nevertheless, even the more agreeable spouses can hit obstacles throughout their settlement process, so be prepared to think about mediation and/or hire an lawyer should that happen.

When you believe you entered into a bum deal or agreed to something you didn’t comprehend, your only recourse is going to be to go back to court to attempt to alter your final order. But un-doing a divorce agreement is challenging and are usually only permitted under very limited circumstances. This is why it’s a good idea to hire a divorce lawyer to go over your settlement agreement prior to you signing it.

Another thing to think about is hiring a consultant lawyer, who can carry out an examination of your suggested divorce settlement prior to you signing it. It’s important to understand that when you agree to the conditions of the divorce, and a judge is going to sign your judgment, you are going to be bound by that agreement and court order.

A Lawyer Can Explain Your Rights

Even when you might be reluctant in hiring a lawyer to get you through your divorce, you need to realize that knowledgeable, local divorce lawyers understand the law, especially as it relates to your state. Each state has distinct divorce requirements, so unless you’re positive in your capability to interpret laws and properly complete legal documentation, you may want to speak with a divorce lawyer near you.

It’s wise to interview a couple of lawyers before you choose one. You should ask whether the lawyer is in support of alternative dispute resolution­ or, mediation—for resolving disputes. Wehn yes, then your lawyer is going to probably not going to recommend a trial unless your spouse is being difficult or irrational. When the lawyer you interview does not have experience in negotiations, divorce settlements, or is an aggressive advocate for litigation, you may want to move on with your search.

A lot of lawyers are going to advocate for their clients at the same time also trying to resolve their case as fast as they can. When you’re still looking for a lawyer, ask friends and relatives for personal references.

Consider Collaborative Practice for Your Divorce

Whereas a lot of lawyers are going to utilize alternative divorce solutions, similar to mediation, some are attempting a new divorce approach known as “collaborative practice,” in which is where the soon to be exes and lawyers agree, beforehand, not to go to court. Through collaborative practice, each side agrees to disclose information voluntarily and aim for a settlement.

In order to use this approach, your spouse is going to need to be in agreement with a collaborative divorce in addition to hiring a collaborative lawyer. Each spouse and their lawyer are going to sign a contract that proclaims if the parties can’t come to an agreement using the collaborative approach, each client is going to hire a new lawyer to oversee the contested case. By removing the option for trial, each party (and their lawyers) are going to work harder to settle, saving both time and money.

When Should You Hire a Lawyer?

There are particular situations in which you should always hire a lawyer. When there’s a history of domestic or child abuse, sexual abuse, or drug and/or alcohol abuse, hiring a lawyer is the best approach to safeguard your rights. If there is a power discrepancy and/or cruelty between spouses, fair negotiations can become unachievable.

When your spouse hires a lawyer, you should follow suit. Even though you might feel like you are able to represent yourself in your divorce case, if one party has a lawyer and the other doesn’t, it usually results in the un-represented party coming away with a bum deal. Be helpful to yourself, level the playing field and retain a lawyer.

Although no divorce is enjoyable, many are downright unbearable, especially if the other party in your case is concealing assets, damaging property, squandering marital money, or threatening you with physical harm and/or financial ruin for filing for a divorce. When you ascertain that you are unable work with your ex, hiring a knowledgeable lawyer to represent you might be your only choice. Not only is the lawyer going to advocate for your rights during the divorce, but also there is no question that you are going to feel some comfort from the stress of your divorce with the knowledge that you have someone on your side.

What If I am Unable to Afford a Lawyer?

Depending on you location, divorces can cost more than twenty-five thousand dollars when hiring a lawyer. If you unable to afford a lawyer, you can get a hold of your local legal aid office and see if you qualify for aid. A lot of legal aid programs have limited resources, so you may only have the chance to talk a lawyer over the phone. In many cases, specifically those concerning domestic violence, legal aid can appoint a lawyer to work with you for the entirety of your case.

Should you not qualify for legal aid, you might be able to locate a lawyer willing to take your case “pro bono,” meaning free. Many states, but not all of them, require lawyers to provide a specific number of pro bono hours annually. The best way to locate a pro bono or low-cost lawyer is to get a hold of your state bar association and ask for referrals. Although not all lawyers have the resources to provide services for free, some might offer lower costs or payment plans.

Lastly, many family law courts provide clinics or volunteer legal personnel that can point you to the correct documents, go over settlement agreements, and even help in filling out documents. Get a hold of your local courthouse and/or check their website and see if there are any services you can utilize.

History of Violence

If you are fearful that your spouse is going to harm you and/or your children, get help. You might be required to move to a safer location without telling your spouse about it. When necessary, ask your lawyer for a restraining order towards your spouse, in which is going to prevent them from coming near you or getting in contact with you. Before you take your children from the house (or quickly as possible following you moving), you should acquire an order for temporary custody, so you are not later accused of kidnapping.

A lot of cities have no cost services for survivors of domestic violence. Get a hold of your local agencies for more information on the resources accessible to you, which might include low-cost legal aid.

When seeking for help as an abuse victim, don’t forget to consider how private your PC, web use, and phone use are. Think about if there’s anything you can and should do to stop someone else from finding out that you’re doing research or looking for help. Many victims, for example, may log into the same PC or device as their abuser, or might have a phone plan that enables the abuser to see the calls they are making and receiving. Other types of technology, such as home security monitors and GPS in phones and vehicles, can also enable tracking by the abuser.


  1. Melissa Heinig, A. (2020, January 24). Divorce: Do you need a lawyer? Retrieved September 14, 2022, from

Choose the Right Divorce Lawyer in Arizona

Regardless of the choice you make, it’s important you make the best choice for you when hiring a divorce attorney. Remember: The decisions you make now can affect your future. Ultimately, choosing the best lawyer will depend on which lawyer feels best for you and your situation.

If you want to learn about Michelle N. Ogborne and see if she is the right attorney to represent you in your collaborative divorce in Arizona, contact us today!

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