“I Am Going Through An Uncontested Divorce: Do I Need An Attorney?”
Some uncontested matters can be accomplished by either doing your own paperwork or by using a document preparation service. Whether or not this is a good idea depends on the issues involved. Keep in mind that you will be held to the standard of an attorney in the divorce if you choose to represent yourself and it can be very difficult or impossible to change the judgment at a later date if you make a mistake.
Here are some factors that mean you probably need an attorney:
*The marriage was of long duration.
*You have real property (such as a house) to divide.
*There is a business that was started or operated during the marriage.
*There are retirement funds that need to be divided.
*You are “trading” certain items of property to the other person in exchange for items you are to receive.
*There are any items to be accomplished in the future, such as dividing property after children turn 18, or a refinance of a house to remove one party’s name from the loan.
*There are significant debts that are being divided.
*One party (but not the other) is filing bankruptcy on community debts.
Remember: you may be stuck with your mistakes, so make sure to obtain legal representation if there are any potential issues that you wish to make sure are correctly ordered and divided in the judgment.
DISCLAIMER: All legal principles quoted are valid as of the date of writing in the State of California. However, you should NEVER base your actions on a legal article, blog, or internet story, as facts in real life are complicated. You should have your case evaluated by an attorney experienced in the area of law needed for your case. In addition, there are often exceptions and potential changes to results that occur due to facts that you may think are trivial or unimportant. This article should not be taken in any way as legal advice on your specific legal matter.