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How Much Divorce Costs in the United States

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The person undergoing divorce in the U.S. usually spends lump-sum money. Hence the couple usually joins a counseling session initially. If they are not able to settle their differences even after attending sessions of counseling, then they both decide to separate from each other. Most of the people in United States who have acquired divorce have spent at least $20,000.

If a person is seeking for divorce, then he must consider the short-term costs and long-term costs that he would incur. The lawyer should charge you more fees because he decides upon your financial issues such as property division, split of bank statements, mortgages and loans, etc. The lawyer’s fees are considered as ‘short-term fees’. Hence you must consider the fees of the lawyer before hiring any. Most of the people in U.S. have paid $25,000 as legal fees and court fees. The fees of the lawyers depend upon their skills, experience, and reputation.

The lawyers usually charge fees at an hourly rate. Most of the lawyers who are less experienced charge $100 to $140. An attorney who has over 30 years of experience may charge $450 per hour. Most of the lawyers charge up-retainer fee from $500 to $10,000. The retainer fee is the fee that is charged by the lawyer during your first visit. The hourly fees are usually deducted from the retainer fees. The lawyers who settle your disputes and handles alimony matters usually charge more. If the couple is able to decide about the financial and child custody aspects harmoniously, then they charge fewer fees. Then the lawyer charges initial filing fee and may charge you $30 for miscellaneous charges such as photocopying, travel expenses, phone calls etc. If the couple has children, then the divorce cost then the divorce cost is $30,000 to $50,000 approximately.

Otherwise, the couples who do not have children and are willing to plan the retirement benefits, division of property and spousal support independently, then the divorce costs would reduce drastically. Instead of paying $20,000, he should pay $15,000. If you are unable to manage about financial aspects issues, spousal support and child custody, then the divorce cost would be more because you have to pay the fees for financial advice or hire a financial attorney. The person has to pay the filing fees and the court fees at any cost. Divorce mediation is a step to reduce divorce costs. Mediation can be done by hiring a mediator. You should only pay him certain amount of fees. If you appoint a mediator, you need not appoint a lawyer who charges you more fees. If you are choosing the method of collaborative divorce, then you would incur heavy expenditure as you hire two attorneys. You may hire an attorney who is specialized in financial aspects and also an attorney who is specialized in family law aspect. Normally if you are incurring $15,000, then if you hire two attorneys you normally pay $25,000 to $30,000. Collaborative divorce is expensive for the people who have children.

Author Bio:
How Much Divorce Costs in the United States” is an article of StateDivorce, a database of Garland, TX lawyers.


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  • Posted On May 1, 2012
  • Published articles 4

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