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How Do I Spend Less on Divorce Legal Fees?

This question is often asked when people are considering which attorney or evaluating the relative costs of a divorce or dissolution:  How do I spend less or control my legal fees through a divorce.  The answer is somewhat evident but not always simple: 1. The cost is always less when the parties are amicable to one another and keep open lines of communication.  This allows for the parties to resolve many issues without the necessity of legal involvement.  If you can determine who gets the end tables and what time to exchange the children on Friday nights, this can prevent hours of legal haggling and court involvement. 2. Costs increase dramatically when you violate certain trusts.  It is common to be distrustful of the spouse when in the middle of a divorce. That said, when one party depletes the savings accounts or keeps the children from seeing the spouse, there is almost always increase in litigation.  Each party has certain rights which are often best left untouched.  For example, while you have the right to clean out a checking account, you would be boiling mad and fully distrustful if your spouse did the same thing.  As such, it may not be the best course of action.  Being honest with your spouse and discuss issues openly.  That said, discuss with your attorney prior to taking significant actions as there are times it is in your best interest. 3. Work with mediators and follow the advice of your attorney.  When you proceed to litigation, the costs increase.  While the cost of a mediator may seem like an added expense, particularly when you are paying for 2 lawyers and a mediator, the mediation can save thousands of dollars in the long run.  A 3 hour mediation that resolves your case is significantly cheaper than a 3 hour trial that takes 15 hours of preparation.  This is also the reason that collaborative law is often less expensive than traditional litigation. 4. Know your opponent.  Unfortunately there are certain attorneys who routinely have significantly higher legal fees than most others.  Whether they convince their clients to litigate or the litigious seek them out is a question for another blog, knowing your opponent will help you to better gauge your anticipated expenses.  An experienced local divorce attorney knows those in the community that will lead to higher fees and help you to avoid the same. If you are considering divorce and want to know your options as well as anticipated legal fees, consult with a local attorney. For Northern Kentucky, call Michael Bouldin at 859-581-6453 or email at [email protected] for a consultation.

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