Should I File for Divorce Without an Attorney?

Divorce is a big decision, and if you are considering it, you likely have a lot of questions. It is important to weigh the pros and cons of a divorce before moving forward, and understanding what is involved can be helpful in making your decision. Many people worry about the cost of a divorce and the amount of time that it will take. People may also worry that involving lawyers will turn a divorce into an adversarial process, and may wish to try and keep things civil by trying to handle the matter themselves. 

Ultimately, the decision of whether to hire an attorney to handle your divorce is entirely personal. However, there are some important facts and considerations to weigh before making the best choice for you and your unique situation. 

Is Hiring an Attorney the Right Choice for Me?

You are not legally required to have an attorney handle your divorce proceedings, but depending on your circumstances, it may make the most sense for you to do so. Below, we’ll go over some basic considerations when deciding to hire a divorce attorney in Missouri. 

Is your Missouri divorce uncontested? 

If your divorce is uncontested, it will be easier to navigate on your own and you are not required to hire an attorney to file. However, in order to file an uncontested divorce, all issues must have been resolved. While some couples are able to amicably resolve all issues on their own, most find that a lawyer (or lawyers) are critical in helping them to negotiate mutually agreeable outcomes. 

Is time a factor when determining to hire a divorce attorney in Missouri? 

Divorce is complicated, even if it happens to be uncontested. Divorce lawyers study for years and have experience in this field. When you choose to represent yourself, it requires a great deal of research, learning, and time. 

There is also generally a great deal of trial and error, which can be high stakes when trials and courts are involved. It can also be easy for couples to drag out the process over weeks, months, or even years when they are unable to reach an agreement on one or many terms. Having a lawyer ensures that the process will continue moving along as expeditiously and efficiently as possible. 

Is a DIY divorce really the best way to save money? 

Cost is a nuanced consideration. On the one hand, hiring a lawyer appears to cost more than not hiring one. However, the court costs and life costs of multiple delays due to otherwise avoidable errors are important to consider. While there are costs associated with a lawyer, you are also investing in a prompt, efficient, and seamless divorce process. This is an investment in the next chapter of your life, as it allows you to move forward as quickly and with as little stress as possible. 

Are you good at working through hard issues with your spouse? 

Unless you and your spouse are both completely capable of working through difficult and emotional issues without getting upset or losing sight of the greater goals for an extended period of time, you will likely benefit from having an objective, calm, third-party attorney to help keep negotiations civil and on track. 

Contact a Trusted Divorce Attorney in St. Charles County Today

If you are considering a divorce in Missouri, it is important to talk to an experienced Missouri divorce lawyer as soon as possible. Contact Johnson Law Firm. We are conveniently located in St. Peters, MO and help families throughout St. Charles County and more.