A recent ranking of the cost of getting a divorce in all 50 states had California as the nation’s most expensive place to dissolve a marriage. Not only are court costs high, but California’s community property system can leave you struggling to make ends meet after a division of property.
Divorce can be a stressful and expensive event, but it doesn’t have to be. While some of the high costs of divorce, such as the expense of setting up a new and separate household from the one shared with a spouse, or court filing fees, cannot be avoided, there are other ways that parties to a divorce can unwittingly drive up the financial burden that a divorce creates. The following are behaviors that can make a divorce more costly than it needs to be:
- Turning to the court over every disagreement
It’s true that some parties to a divorce won’t listen to any voice but the judge’s when it comes to complying with the terms of a custody-sharing agreement or spousal support payment schedule. That said, unless you’ve exhausted all other options, don’t turn to the court for a new order each time your former spouse behaves in a frustrating or obstructive manner. You’ll spend hundreds of dollars in filing and attorneys’ fees, and you might wear out your welcome with the judge.
- Failing to agree on as much as possible before going to court
Maybe it seems impossible to imagine agreeing to anything after you and your spouse have decided to divorce, let alone agreeing how to split up your property or time with your children, but doing so will save you months of effort and potentially thousands of dollars, as compared to forcing the court to do all the work in a contested trial.
- Thinking that a long, drawn-out divorce might lead to reconciliation
You might be reluctant to let your spouse go, if you aren’t the party who initiated the divorce, and you may think that drawing out the divorce process will buy you some time to win your spouse back. Instead of causing your soon-to-be-ex additional grief, try to look toward the future rather than the past. This should include saving the funds you might otherwise spend on a lengthy divorce, and using them to build a brighter financial future.
If you are in need of dedicated, cost-sensitive legal help with your Southern California divorce, contact the experienced and compassionate San Diego family law attorney Andy Cook for a consultation on your case, at 619-515-9900.