The process of divorce can be very expensive, often requiring a significant investment of both time and money. In fact, one of the first questions most people considering a divorce tend to ask pertains to what the financial cost will be. There is no way to determine exactly the cost involved in completing the divorce as it can vary greatly depending upon the circumstances of your marriage and your ability to work with your soon-to-be ex-spouse. Your costs will also be affected by your expectations for the divorce, and whether your desired outcome is reasonable or realistic.
One of the important aspects of a cost-effective divorce is comprehensive preparation. Long before you are ready to file your petition for the dissolution of marriage, you can begin planning. Make a list of your marital and non-marital assets, and start thinking about your priorities. Determine which assets you would like to keep, which assets your spouse should get, and which assets really do not matter either way. If you and your spouse have agreed that divorce is your only option, you may be able to cooperate with surprising effectiveness at this stage.
You should also begin similar planning regarding your children, if applicable. While dividing parental responsibilities is often more complex—and, in reality, more important—than splitting property, you and your spouse need to talk about how you will provide for your children following your divorce. The more that you and your spouse can work through in advance, the less you will need to spend to have the matters decided during the actual divorce process.
Pick Your Battles
There are no real winners in a divorce, especially one with high levels of contentiousness and acrimony. You may be tempted to stand your ground and fight over every little detail, either out of a sense of propriety or pride. Doing so, however, will likely cause the total fees for your divorce to increase dramatically.
Instead, set realistic goals and decide on a few things that are truly worth your time, money, and attention. Then, make the conscious decision to let other elements go. If your spouse really wants to keep a specific piece of artwork, for example, to which you have no particular attachment, avoid the temptation to fight about it for the sake of fighting. There is a good chance that your spouse will afford you the same consideration over something else that is much more important to you.
Hire a Lawyer
On the surface, saving money by hiring a lawyer for your divorce may seem counterintuitive. However, an attorney can help you keep your costs to a minimum both during the process and over the long term. Your attorney can help you file documents and paperwork with the court, reducing the likelihood of clerical errors. In addition, a lawyer can also provide guidance regarding the law, helping to prevent mistakes that could cost you thousands of dollars in spousal support, child support, or other considerations.
At Bochte, Kuzniar & Navigato, P.C., we understand that finances can be tight during a divorce. That is why we are committed to providing responsible, cost-effective representation no matter how complex your case may be. To learn more, contact an experienced Kane County divorce attorney. Call 630-377-7770 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation today.