The quick answer is “no.” However the thought of divorce can be scary and many people fear financial ruin is part of the process. The real question is not “can I get a divorce for free,” it is “what kind of divorce do I want?” Your choice of lawyer can have a huge impact on what kind of divorce you get for your money.
It is important to know that not all family lawyers practice in the same way. The more traditional methods of settlement negotiations are built to fit all kinds of legal disputes, while collaborative divorce proceedings are designed specifically to help families transition from one household into two, with as little damage as possible to the family assets and savings and with as little trauma as possible to the children.
If you want to avoid a courtroom divorce, then a collaborative lawyer may be your best option. Collaborative lawyers are committed to working with you to reach a settlement and avoid the possibility of fighting each other in court spending time and money.
It may be hard to trust your ex spouse and that the collaborative divorce process will work for you. One comforting fact is that the collaborative divorce process has worked thousands of times all over the country for people like you.
What are your alternatives?
Do you want a divorce that will “punish” your ex? If that is the case then look for lawyers who have the “bull dog” or “gladiator” reputation in your area. Then be prepared to watch your lawyer pull apart the last few years of your ex’s life in depositions and while they are on the witness stand (and be prepared to have your ex’s lawyer do the same to you!).
If you want a divorce which is “quick and dirty,” you can get it by agreeing to all of your ex’s proposals and then finding a lawyer who will let you do so.
If you want a “fair divorce,” you should look for lawyers who will listen to what your definition of “fair” is. You are probably not surprised to hear that collaborative divorce lawyers are very interested to hear what your definition of “fair” is.
If you know you are going to get divorced, be sure you are searching for a lawyer who can deliver the kind of divorce you are looking for. A collaborative divorce may be your best option to save time and money.
If you want to find out how the collaborative divorce approach can be your best financial option, contact us to learn more.