How do you know when to stop trying to get the divorce done yourself and get an attorney? According to the State of California more than 80% of the divorce cases filed across California begin with the parties representing themselves. Many attempt to complete their divorce without an attorney in an attempt to save money only to learn the process is daunting, time consuming and ultimately too difficult for most to complete on their own. The vast majority of divorce cases filed by the parties themselves require an attorney before the divorce is completed.
When do you know it is time to stop trying to get the divorce done on your own? Why do many parties attempt a divorce without an attorney? How can an attorney actually save you time and money?
A San Diego family court judge recently was quoted as saying “I ask the couples who appear before me how long they’ve been trying to get divorced. The vast majority say ‘more than a year.'” The Judge was addressing the backlog of cases where the parties continued to appear before the court without having completed every step of the process and having appropriately formatted paperwork for the court to review and accept. The Judge was also attempting to help divorcing spouses to know when to stop trying to get the divorce done yourself and get an attorney.
Those who might consider filing on their own should be characterized by short term marriages without children or substantial assets. Most are simply trying to save money, and end up taking much more time off of work to seek help from the court and to make endless appearances without success. There must be complete resolution of every aspect of the divorce before a judge can issue final orders.
This includes, but is not limited to:
- child custody and parenting time as well as child support
- spousal support
- the division of community property including the disposition of the family home
- division of any business or professional practice owned by either or both of the spouses
In addition, retirement assets must be divided and appropriate Qualified Domestic Relations Order(s) or QDROs must be executed. The majority of couples who wish to end their marriage find it challenging to resolve differences surrounding one or more of the issues above leading to a case which is unresolved, languishing in the courts for more than a year.
How do you know when to stop trying to get the divorce done yourself and get an attorney? From the outset, if you have children, a family home with equity, 401(k) or retirement assets or own an interest in a business you will need an experienced Certified Family Law Specialist at Burke & Domercq. If you are months into your divorce and are tired of standing in line at the Court’s free advice clinic before sunrise and missing a lot of work only to appear before the Court and be scolded about the lack of resolution of issues or the quality of your paperwork it is time to get help from Burke & Domercq.
The partners at Burke & Domercq have each represented North County residents in divorce and family law proceedings for multiple decades. We understand most clients want to protect their goals and objectives while working to resolve areas of dispute in a timely and cost-effective manner.
If you are considering a divorce or have already spent hours and hours attempting to complete it on your own we invite you to review the comments and recommendations of our clients and the legal industry and contact Burke & Domercq or call 760-712-3471 to schedule an appointment with one of our attorneys.
We can and will help. Our Certified Family Law Specialists provide sound counsel and guidance throughout the process and work to help our clients to complete their divorce in the shortest possible time frame and with the lowest possible emotional and financial expense.