Forbes recently published an article about ways to reduce the cost of divorce.
Our Monmouth County divorce attorneys are always interested when financial publications publish legal advice. While this article is better than most (or we wouldn’t be sharing it), we still found ourselves uttering “true” or “false” as we went through the list.
- Choose your divorce process: TRUE. Among the best ways to contain costs of divorce can be to come to agreement on the major issues during mediation, thereby avoiding the costs associated with a trial. However, that does not mean you should forfeit your rights when significant disagreements remain. Talk to your divorce lawyer about the cost/benefit of pursuing your claim beyond mediation.
- Use paralegals: Mostly FALSE. While it is true that paralegals can be less costly, that’s primarily because they are not attorneys and lack experience. We do not believe the best cost-containment strategy is to use less experienced and qualified services. Read more about finding legal help during divorce.
- Get organized: TRUE. We have written about this before on our New Jersey Family Law Attorneys blog. Getting organized for divorce is among the best things you can to ensure a proper settlement and to reduce your legal costs.
- Use e-mail: PARTIALLY TRUE. Concise e-mails can replace multiple phone calls and your divorce attorney is likely billing by the hour. Time is money. However, there are times when particularly contentious issues are better discussed in person, rather than in a written record. Talk to your attorney about her preferred method of communication.
- Avoid paying for appraisals: FALSE. Appraisals are relatively inexpensive and worth the cost if ordered by your divorce attorney. Determining fair market value of significant assets like homes, vehicles, businesses, and collectibles, can be central to obtaining a proper divorce settlement. Looking to save a few bucks on appraisals is penny wise and pound foolish.
- Keep retirement distributions simple: Partially TRUE: The article advises finding simpler solutions than Qualified Domestic Relations Orders when it comes to retirement accounts. While the “I keep mine/you keep yours” approach can work for some people, a QDRO can be critical to ensuring you receive your fair share of a spouse’s retirement account.
- Use your attorney wisely: Mostly TRUE. Divorce attorneys in Monmouth County can be an invaluable resource. Clients who end up unhappy with their legal bills are often the same clients who use excessive time and legal resources or fail to follow their lawyer’s advice when it comes to reaching an agreement.
An experienced and ethical family law attorney will strive to chart a course through the process in an expedient and financially prudent fashion. It’s our job to remove the emotions from the process and act in your best interest.
Choosing an experienced New Jersey family law attorney, and committing to following their advice, is the best bet when it comes to exiting a marriage on solid financial ground.
Call Rozin|Golinder Law, LLC today for a free and confidential consultation.