Do you feel like your marriage is no longer working and is on the rocks? Are you considering divorce? Unfortunately, divorce is one of the most feared words by married couples.
According to research, over 39% of marriages in the U.S. end in divorce. While many people feel like their marriages are not working, most opt for a divorce instead of living together miserably. So, do you need a divorce lawyer?
Sadly, the divorce process is emotionally exhausting and overwhelming. Some couples find a way to amicably dissolve their marriage without resulting in court and lawyers. However, other couples can’t stand each other at the end of their marriage, and they need the help of lawyers to come to a settlement.
So how do you know when to hire a divorce attorney? Below are seven signs that you may need an attorney right away.
1. You and Your Spouse Are Not on Good Terms
Some couples end their marriage on good terms and find ways to discuss all the issues revolving around their separation without involving the court and lawyers. Unfortunately, this is only possible if both of you are on the same side and focused on making the divorce easier.
However, this isn’t always the case. Sometimes, one of the parties involved is unwilling to negotiate or have a sit-down to talk about the divorce. This is especially true if your marriage had instances of negligence, abuse, cheating, and other irreconcilable differences.
If you find yourself in a position where you can’t have a sober conversation with your partner about the divorce, it’s time to hire a divorce lawyer. The attorney will protect your interests in the proceedings and act as the intermediary between you and your spouse.
2. You Have Young Children
Are you contemplating divorce but unsure of how to go about it due to young children? Having younger children means that the divorce isn’t just about you and your spouse. You will also need to consider the children’s needs, especially if they are below 18 years.
There are issues of visitation rights and child support that may cause disagreements among the two of you. You will also need to address the following issues:
- Who should be the primary caregiver of the children?
- How will you handle child support?
- Do you opt for sole or joint custody?
- What are the visitation arrangements for the other parent?
- How will you co-parent the children while not living together?
Cases involving child custody are quite complex. Thus, if you can’t agree on one thing, you should hire the best divorce attorney.
3. Your Spouse Already Hired an Attorney
If your spouse hires an attorney, ensure you also get yourself one. Your partner’s attorney will not have your best interest at heart, and they will not give you the right legal advice to protect your interests. If you don’t have an attorney, you may be bullied into making certain decisions without having a complete understanding of your rights.
Even if you have agreed not to bring in lawyers into the divorce, ensure you hire an attorney immediately your spouse hires one.
4. Your Union Is a Common Law Marriage
A common law marriage is known as an informal marriage. This means that there are no legal documents that can support or certify your marriage. Some states don’t recognize common-law marriages, but they recognize committed intimate relationships.
If you are in a committed intimate relationship or a common law marriage and have children and acquired assets together, separating can be quite stressful. Since you can’t go to court for a divorce, ensure you hire a divorce attorney to help you dissolve the relationship amicably. When you both get legal representation, it will be easier to handle the finances, divide property and cater to your kids’ needs.
5. You Can’t Agree on Property Division
Dividing property during a divorce is one of the most challenging issues faced by divorcing couples. One of the main benefits of a divorce lawyer is that they will help you divide your property. The complexity of the division comes in when:
- One or both of you acquired some assets before getting married
- Both of you acquired assets while married
- Both of you have joint ventures like investments and businesses
Property division is a major cause of disagreement and strife among divorcing couples. Sometimes, a selfish party may decide to reorganize some money and assets in an attempt to lower the value of property and assets subject to division.
If you can’t agree on how to divide your property, ensure you hire a divorce attorney to help. Your attorney will safeguard all your financial and personal interests and ensure a safe settlement.
6. You Don’t Understand Much About Divorce Law
Getting a divorce is not just about signing the divorce papers and taking half of your marital assets. It also requires a deep understanding of divorce laws. This is especially true in complicated issues such as:
- Child custody and support
- Blended family issues
- Prenuptial agreements
Family law varies from state to state. Therefore, you need to understand the laws in your country to ensure that your rights are respected. If you don’t have a deeper understanding of family and divorce law in your state, hire a divorce attorney to help you.
7. When Drafting a Prenuptial Agreement
If you and your partner have assets and properties you would wish to protect before getting married, it’s advisable to prepare a prenuptial agreement. A divorce attorney could help prepare the agreement for you. The agreement will determine how your wealth will be divided if the marriage ends in death or divorce.
Most people opt for a prenuptial agreement when there is a significant wealth imbalance between the two individuals. Ensure you hire an attorney to secure your future.
Are You Ready to Hire a Divorce Lawyer?
Divorce lawyer services may be beneficial to you if you are not aware of the divorce laws in your state, if you have younger children, and when you can’t agree with your spouse. A divorce lawyer will walk you through the divorce process and help you better understand what to expect while also protecting your interests in the proceedings.
Suppose you have reached a point where your marriage is no longer working, and the next step is divorce, ensure you hire an attorney immediately. This will help you safeguard your rights and prevent your spouse from making any moves that could harm your children and your financial future.
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