Like many things in the law, the answer is, it depends.
There are three main types of divorce our practice encounters; uncontested, amicable and contested.
Uncontested divorces are the quickest, simplest and usually the healthiest for families. In an uncontested divorce, the parties have previously decided the division of assets, child custody, and child support among themselves and we merely facilitate the legal paperwork. Occasionally, we are asked to help mediate slight differences in a calm and non-confrontational manner. While we only represent one party in this process, we try to make sure the unrepresented party can express their position and help the parties come to a resolution. This is the least expensive method by which to obtain a divorce and you can expect to pay a flat fee for these services.
Amicable divorces, as part of the process found within the Amicable Divorce NetworkTM (www.amicabledivorcenetwork.com) helps parties who do not want to bicker over their “conscious uncoupling” but need help from professionals to assist them in dividing their lives and families. In the Amicable DivorceTM, both parties agree to use professionals in the network for their case and to make every effort to fully settle their case prior to filing anything with the court. Amicable Divorce professionals have experience working together to resolve matters for the parties and agree to work through contested issues for the parties using alternate dispute methods like mediation, parent coordination, arbitration, financial professionals and more to reach an informed settlement for everyone to resolve their issues. Through the Amicable DivorceTM process, parties may need negotiation or mediation to assist in reaching an agreement. They will exchange financial information and can obtain other documentation they need to reach a fully informed agreement. The Amicable Divorce process is designed to assist parties at all stages of settlement to reach a peaceful conclusion to their matter without judicial intervention. Depending on the complexity of the marital and/or non-marital assets and agreement on parenting time and custody, an estimated expense for an Amicable Divorce might cost between $3,000.00 and $10,000.00, depending on how many hours the attorney and staff worked on the case and if other professionals were required. Amicable divorces are billed at per hour rates.
Contested divorces are expensive financially and emotionally. Our firm can bring or defend a contested divorce but be prepared to spend at least $30,000.00 to do so. Contested divorces usually have at least one party who will not accept defeat and oftentimes, there is domestic violence involved. Having children magnifies the time and expense involved because an attorney for the children, known as a Guardian Ad Litem, is mandatory. If there are businesses involved, we also use specialists to provide business evaluations. If the opposing party is hiding assets, our firm will investigate and issue subpoenas to find assets. Contested divorces can take several years to resolve. At Sanchez Curtis Law, we try to mediate these cases to resolution, but this is not successful if one of the parties is not interested.
Call us today to discuss which type of resolution is best for you.