Are you wondering who will be responsible for legal bills during a costly divorce? Learn which costs, including attorneys’ fees, you should expect to pay during this process below.
What Are Attorneys’ Fees In A Divorce?
In a divorce process, each spouse is generally responsible for compensating their own attorney for services rendered by said attorney and his/her staff.
A divorce attorney will typically provide the following services:
- Researching statutes and finding laws that apply to your case.
- Setting up terms for child support and legal decisions.
- Formulating legal arguments.
- Gathering evidence to further support your case.
- Figuring out options for division of assets and debt.
- Representing client during court hearings.
- Creating legal documents and filing them with the court.
- Preparing for secondary follow-up meetings/appeals.
Who Typically Pays Lawyers’ Fees In A Divorce?
In the majority of cases, each spouse is responsible for paying his or her own lawyer fees in a divorce setting. There are some cases in which one spouse may be ordered to pay the other spouse’s legal fees.
Can My Spouse Be Ordered To Pay My Attorneys’ Fees?
Yes and no, depending on a few factors that are set forth by statute and case law. Divorce statutes in the state of Arizona give a judge the discretion to order one spouse to pay either all or some of the other spouse’s legal fees during the process of a divorce. Other statutes require a judge to order an award of legal fees. This is a sanction for specific misconduct during the course of the action.
According to ARS 25-324., ““The court from time to time, after considering the financial resources of both parties and the reasonableness of the positions each party has taken throughout the proceedings, may order a party to pay a reasonable amount to the other party for the costs and expenses of maintaining or defending any proceeding under this chapter or chapter 4, article 1 of this title.”
ARS 25-324. continues: “The court shall award reasonable costs and attorney fees. This means that if a judge discovers a petition was not filed in good faith, was not grounded in fact or based in law or was filed for an improper purpose, including harassment, unnecessary delay or to increase the litigation cost to the other party.
Who Pays Attorneys’ Fees In A Collaborative Divorce?
In a collaborative divorce process, the spouses will have to agree as part of their overall settlement about how the fees for professionals, including attorneys, will be paid.
Typically, collaborative divorces in Arizona can be completed quicker than traditional litigation in a courthouse and can cost much less than conventionally litigated divorces completed in court. There are some cases where you can be divorced in as little as 60-90 days from the filing time. This would help the couple save thousands of dollars in litigation fees.
Do I Need A Divorce Attorney?
You should always consider hiring a divorce attorney if you want professional assistance in pursuing an ideal outcome for your legal decisions, custody arrangement, child support, parenting time, asset and debt division and spousal support. Furthermore, hiring an attorney is necessary when your spouse also plans to hire an attorney or if your case is quite complex.
- Rivera, Jose. “Who Pays Attorneys’ Fees in Divorce?” LegalMatch Law Library, 1 May 2018, https://www.legalmatch.com/law-library/article/who-pays-attorneys-fees-in-divorce.html.
- Bird, Beverly. “Who Pays for Legal Expenses in a Divorce?” LegalZoom Legal Info, 18 July 2016, https://info.legalzoom.com/pays-legal-expenses-divorce-21861.html.
- Nolo. “Divorce Lawyers’ Fees Can Be Reduced When Spouses Act ‘Reasonably.’” www.alllaw.com, Nolo, 10 June 2019, https://www.alllaw.com/articles/family/divorce/article24.asp.
Need Divorce Attorneys In Scottsdale?
The High Desert Family Law Group should be your first choice when you need the best divorce lawyer in Scottsdale or Phoenix, Arizona. Our experienced family law attorneys will work with you to obtain the best possible outcome in your situation. Proven trial lawyers in family court, you can trust the firm to represent you fully so you can get on with your life. Call today for your initial consultation.