One of the most common questions I get asked is, “What will the divorce cost?” I believe that it is one of the most important discussions everyone should have with their attorney and spouse.
Getting educated on what type of budget needs to be established for the family that is going through a divorce must be completed. The budget will be driven by what process you and your spouse use. When meeting with your attorney find out about all options available for resolution. Be sure to ask if they are trained in collaborative divorce, mediation, negotiated settlement and/or litigation. Through the process of learning how you can achieve your goals, you become an educated consumer.
You and your spouse may have a friendly relationship where you can talk amicably about most things regarding your divorce.
Though you and your partner have good intentions of working things out, there is always the possibility of disagreements occurring that can stall negotiations. So, thinking ahead to when difficult topics, such as establishing your parenting plan, or determining spousal support needs to be discussed, one can make a better choice on the process to select. The more options your attorney can provide you the better. Being able to pull from as many out-of-court resolution methods the better.
Each process will require a financial investment. Most out-of-court processes will incur most expenses at the front-end of the process. A Collaborative Divorce requires the hiring of the professional team. Mediation will require the hiring of the mediator. For those drawn into litigation wherein all resolution takes place at Court, the costs run from start to finish. Most often with the highest fees seen at time of trial.
While there is the financial cost to a divorce, it is also important to realize that there is also the cost of time.
Building on that is the emotional impact of the divorce and the unknown future. Many personal considerations will go into selecting the process that fits best for you and your family.
In selecting the process consider more than your needs and desires. Ask yourself what you can offer in the negotiations to make your spouse more receptive to meeting them. Take their emotions and situation into consideration as well. Ask questions and encourage your partner to do the same. Keep an open mind.
Open communication between you and your attorney is imperative.
Understanding your financial investment and the benefits and disadvantages of the process you are considering will result in a more successful process and outcome. Never ignore your billing statement received from any processional involved in your divorce. Ask questions and be informed.