When Is It Time To Lawyer Up To Get A Divorce?

The Complexity of A Divorce
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Making the decision to get a divorce is not an easy decision by any means. 

Think about, you are about to separate with the spouse that you might have been with for more than twenty or even thirty years. There’s a lot at stake. 

You have to now separate custody of your children, and potentially even divide assets and if something of value is on the line, such as a house or a fancy new SUV. 

If you’re getting to a point where your spouse is unwilling to change, he or she might be back in the same patterns of the past, and they might claim to change, but nothing is happening, it might be time to lawyer up. 

But how exactly do you know when the right time is to hire an attorney? Let’s find out. 

Know About The Complexity of A Divorce

Before you start the emotionally-charged process of getting a divorce, you need to know what the process entails. According to a well-known San Diego divorce lawyer, “a lawyer can help make the divorce process simpler for both parties involved”. 

The process for getting a divorce in each state is different, but most states follow these basic steps: 

1. File A Petition For Dissolution of Marriage

A divorce starts with a petition from one spouse asking the court to dissolve the marriage. To qualify for the filing, you usually need to live in a state for a specified amount of time. For example, in California, you or your spouse need to have lived in California for at least six months. 

2. Serve The Divorce Papers To Your Spouse

After filing a petition, you need to share or serve the papers to your spouse, or deliver the papers to your spouse in any way possible. 

3. Go To Trial (If Applicable)

If you or your spouse cannot come to an agreement regarding contentious issues such as division of assets or child custody, your case will likely end up going to trial. Going the route of court is not ideal since it can cost both parties more time and money than anticipated, so other solutions are often suggested, such as mediation or arbitration. 

4. Finalize The Divorce and Come To A Mutual Agreement

Once both parties come to a mutual decision on how to separate, the divorce is officially finalized. After the divorce is finalized, there can be a waiting period that is required by law. It’s important to note that the divorce waiting time varies by state, but it typically ranges from no time to up to one year. 

If you’re considering the process of divorce, know that it can be a potentially lengthy and extremely time consuming process. Additionally, you need to keep in mind that the average cost of a divorce in the United States is typically between $15,000 and $20,000, depending on what is at stake. 

For instance, a high-asset divorce will likely take a longer time and cost more money due to the complex division of assets, along with who pays for what, etc. So, what exactly are the red flags to look out for in your spouse before hiring an attorney? Note the following. 

Signs That It May Be Time to Hire a Divorce Lawyer

Here are the following signs that it might be the right time to hire a divorce lawyer that is on your side. 

Your Spouse Has An Affair

Infidelity or affairs is one of the most common (and understandable) reasons for getting a divorce. According to the American Psychological Association, 53% of couples who went through an affair in their marriage were divorced within five years, even with therapy involved. 

If your spouse continues to cheat on you after he or she might claim to have changed their ways, it might be time to move on. The time that you spend trying to get your spouse to change their ways is not worth it anymore. Instead, you’re wasting your time trying to get an individual out of their old habits, and yet even after all of this time, he or she might refuse to change.

Your Spouse Becomes Disagreeable

When you and your spouse got married, chances are, there was agreement on most aspects of the marriage, such as finances, housing, and what the future envisions. 

The unfortunate reality with marriage is that overtime, people can change. 

Think about what your life was like ten years ago. You might ask yourself, “Am I the same person I was ten years ago?” The likely answer to that question is no

During the course of your adult life, it’s common for interests to change, and in the context of marriage, that may not align with your spouse anymore as interests change overtime. 

Your Spouse Is Making Finances More Complicated

Unsurprisingly, finances are also one of the most common reasons for a legal separation. And what if you’re in a place where your spouse spends exorbitant amounts of money on items that you may not need? 

If you’re in a place where you and your spouse can’t come to an agreement on your monetary situation, and yet your husband or wife spends too much money on something neither of you need, such as an expensive pizza oven, that can also be a source of stress to both parties involved.

Your Spouse Is Verbally or Physically Abusive

If your spouse starts to become abusive for any reason, whether physically or verbally, run. 

Find a safe place for you and your children (if applicable) at a friend’s house, or a hotel. Call the police immediately and lawyer up. 

Chances are, if you end up hiring a great attorney, they can help grant you full custody of your children and assets, depending on your individual situation. So if you ever find yourself in this situation, get away from your spouse and lawyer up as soon as possible. 

Know If Hiring A Divorce Attorney Is The Right Decision For You

In summary, you can know if hiring a divorce attorney is the right choice for you, by knowing what the process entails and looking at the right signs. 

The signs include the following:

  1. An Affair
  2. Disagreements
  3. Financial Mistakes
  4. Verbal or Physical Abuse

By looking at these signs, it’s crucial to recognize how important it is to potentially hire a lawyer and get legal representation as soon as you can. Remember that time is of the essence when it comes to getting the justice that you deserve.

The content published on this website is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal, health or other professional advice.

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