Getting divorced can be a costly process. You will have heard horror stories in the media of couples racking up legal bills into the millions, which adds to the stress of an already stressful time.
However, divorce doesn’t have to be as expensive as many people think it is. There are ways of reducing the costs which will benefit everyone.
Take it slowly
You don’t have to rush into a divorce once you have decided to split. Often, giving yourself and your spouse time to process the information and start mapping out plans for the future will make the divorce process easier and therefore cheaper, as you both come to terms with the end of the marriage.
When all communication breaks down, the legal bills go up. Do everything that you can to keep communication open with your spouse. Even if you are certain that your marriage is over, it can still pay to go to marriage counselling, or attend mediation sessions so you learn how to communicate openly.
Keep out of the courts
“I’ll see you in court!” May sound dramatic and threatening, but for many couples there is no need to go through the courts. This dramatically increases the costs. You can try mediation with a fully trained mediator, or collaborative law, where you both sit with your divorce solicitors and decide on the terms. For many couples this is cheaper and less stressful than going to court.
If you have a good relationship with your ex and just want to get the divorce out the way, it is tempting to take a DIY approach. However, divorce is a complicated legal process that will impact the rest of your life. You should take advice from a qualified family solicitor before you sign the papers to check that you haven’t made any mistakes that will impact you and your family.
Plan for the rest of your life
When you are looking to divide your accumulated wealth, it is easy to only worry about your immediate concerns – the house, enough income to look after yourself and a car. However, you need to also look long term and remember things such as children’s university fees, and your pensions as well. A good family law solicitor will help you to unpick your finances and to split them in a way that is fair to both of you.