Divorce can be costly. National statistics say that on average, each side typically spends over $10,000. Some couples spend even more. It depends on how much you fight. The bulk of the cost, of course, is the attorney’s fees. But there are ways to keep divorce costs down and maybe avoid some heartache in the process. Here are three money-saving tips.
Spend Wisely and Talk Freely — To a Therapist
Lawyers aren’t therapists. They are also more expensive than therapists. Yet many people consult with their lawyers to complain and assign blame.
People often feel broken, angry, resentful, or even vengeful during a divorce. But the legal process doesn’t make anyone whole. You must find peace on your own. That’s where a therapist comes in. Therapy also can help the legal process run more smoothly. Find a way to retell your life story in a way that incorporates different perspectives about the end of your marriage. Stop being a victim.
Don’t Hide Assets
If you think you can get away with hiding assets, think again. Judges detest asset hiders. There are severe financial penalties for hiding assets if you get caught. Don’t do it. It’s fraud. Be candid with your lawyer.
Sweat the Big Stuff
Arguing over personal property can be a financial drain. Hold out for the valuable and irreplaceable. Judges hate arguments over personal property and will likely not divide the property in the way the parties prefer. Even more important, if you insist on an unreasonably high value for a particular asset, it will probably be awarded to you.
Be a thoughtful consumer. Legal bills run up quickly. Use good judgment. Sweat only the big stuff.