I know an amazing mother of four children. She is on her second marriage and this time, the marriage is extremely successful. She and her caring, supportive husband are both school teachers. They have two-year-old twins and a house with — literally — a white-picket fence around it. It wasn’t always this way. Continue reading “How To Squirrel Away $5,000 & Win At Your Divorce”
- Double Legal Fees.
Jennifer thought my price was too high. She went with her husband to a discount “divorce mill” in another county that promised a cheap divorce in under a month. The divorce papers were filed but her ex- was refusing to move out. Not only that, he was making sexual advances. One night, they got in a fight and the police were called. They arrested Jennifer and put a restraining order in place preventing her from going home! The result: we had to act quickly to transfer the upstate case to the city and make an emergency motion so that Jennifer could see her 2-year-old son. Her fast, cheap divorce turned into a full-out court battle. “If I had only paid you the first time to negotiate, you wouldn’t have left these loose ends!” she lamented. Instead she paid the divorce mill and then she paid me to clean up their mistakes.
- Bad Financial Decisions.
“This is taking too long! I can’t stand it anymore,” Ben told me. We had been negotiating his divorce for two months and were now waiting to be assigned for the first hearing in his case. “I’m ready to sign anything just to get this over,” he said. But I wouldn’t let him. He was offering to pay for his wife’s rent indefinitely, an offer that she would most likely be willing to accept. “She lives in a small one-bedroom right now, but what if she moves to Trump Towers?” I asked him. Several months later and his wife had a new live-in boyfriend, and Ben was over the idea of financing their rent. “Let him pay for it,” he said. “You were right – I’d be kicking myself right now if I had agreed to that!”
Tip: Take some time out to think about financial decision-making; there is a reason people say “sleep on it,” because a little extra time can save you big in the long run!
- Delayed Fighting.
Judith’s husband Brian had a string of adulterous affairs, including sleeping with her best friend. After a whirlwind of negotiations, the parties signed a divorce agreement that was extremely favorable to Judith, thanks to Brian’s guilty conscience. Judith claimed she was “so over it” but she was still angry texting Brian and his girlfriend. She was at the end of the legal process, but the start of her emotional process. Judith and Brian started to argue about their agreement. Brian regretted his quick decisions and brought a post-divorce court case. Judith felt that she had “let him off too easy” and countered with her own allegations. Despite being divorced, the couple hadn’t worked through their emotional process – they were still hurt and angry! – and were back to an in-court fight that would take months or years to resolve.
- Extended Living Together.
Marjory was elated. “He says he’ll agree to anything I want so long as he can stay in the apartment for the next eight months.” She felt like the benefits of a fast agreement outweighed the negatives, despite my warnings. Four months later and Marjory was not a happy camper. “You were so right!” she said. She thought that his presence in the apartment would help the kids adjust, but it only caused upset. “And, he’s going through all my things and talking about getting back together!” The agreement was signed and the divorce was already final, but the parties hadn’t separated delaying the upheaval in the home for themselves and the kids. Now Marjory’s ex- had to face the divorce, and he was dragging his feet, which led them to post-divorce court fights to get him out of the house.
Tip: Avoid post-divorce fighting: don’t agree to live together after the divorce is final!
Did you or someone you know rush parts of their divorce that resulted in added costs? Join the conversation in the comments!
Divorce? You aren’t alone. Statistics show that January through March each year there’s a surge in Divorce filings. Questions? You can contact me 24/7 through my online schedule system at http://www.RichardsonLegalPLLC.com
“I want to be done with this! Why is this divorce taking so long?!” said every divorce client ever. While there is nothing wrong with a quick and friendly divorce, there are many times that rushing the legal process won’t help end your emotional pain. In fact, rushing your case may cost you more money in after-the-fact fixes. Here are my top 4 reasons why you should not rush your divorce:
Nothing runs up your legal fees in divorce faster than urgent phone calls and late night emails to your lawyer. Dialing your lawyer about custody or possible arrest is reasonable. But some things are not urgent: your blender is not an important part of your divorce (even if it is a “Vitamix”).
But your world is turned upside down right now! That’s why you hired a lawyer – to guide you with pragmatic and unemotional response to your life drama. Here are my top 4 tips that will keep your legal fees in check: Continue reading “Four Things That Will Double The Cost Of Your Divorce (And How To Avoid Them!)”
Earlier this week, Financial blogger Emma Johnson — who writes at WealthySingleMommy.com — penned an interesting piece about financing options for women who may be trapped in bad marriages with no way to finance a divorce. Continue reading “Divorce Financing Options: Creative Ways to Fund Your Case”
You just started your search for the right divorce lawyer. Odds are you have heard more opinions on the subject than you care for – after all, this is like finding a dentist for a root canal, isn’t it? But what are some secrets to hiring a divorce attorney that lawyers don’t always want to discuss? At the risk of getting some dirty looks from my fellow lawyers at the next Bar Association meeting, here are my top five tips that you should know when hiring a divorce lawyer: