Do You Need a Divorce Lawyer? Understanding Your Legal Options

If you are considering divorce, you may be wondering whether you need a lawyer to help you through the process.

The answer is that it depends on your situation.

While it is possible to get divorced without a lawyer, there are many reasons why you might want to consider hiring one.

A lawyer will help you understand your rights, and obligations under the law, and negotiate with your spouse.

The lawyer on your behalf, ensures that your interests are protected throughout the process.

An image of a couple signing decree papers getting divorced in a lawyer's office to illustrate the title "Do you need a divorce lawyer?"
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Occasions where you need a divorce lawyer

If you are getting a contested divorce, you should hire a divorce attorney.

A lawyer knows what your rights are in your specific situation and can help you reach the best possible agreement with your spouse.

In case you are concerned about your safety and the safety of your children, you’ll want to get professional help.

Assuming that you and your spouse have decided to divorce, one of your first questions is whether you need a divorce lawyer.

It’s not a simple question; the answer depends on your situation.

Generally, your divorce will go more smoothly when you can work together to settle.

Taking a do-it-yourself approach can mean less reliance on the courts to solve your problems.

How much it costs to hire a divorce lawyer?

The cost of hiring a divorce lawyer varies depending on several factors such as the experience of the lawyer and the complexity of your case.

The median total for divorce attorney fees in 2019 was $7,000 and the average was $11,300.

On average, hiring a  lawyer costs approximately $242 an hour.

However, clients may pay as low as $99-$125 an hour and others could pay closer to $350-$400 an hour.

Divorce attorney fees video

A divorce lawyer has experience in issues of divorce, child custody and visitation, child support, and spousal support.

The lawyer represents their client in court or mediation and helps them to negotiate a settlement with their spouse.

Additionally, He/She drafts and files the divorce papers and the marital settlement agreement, and protects the rights of the client.

Divorce attorneys also explain the law and the available legal options to their clients.


Deciding whether to hire a divorce lawyer is a critical consideration when facing the prospect of divorce.

Collaborative settlement efforts and a DIY approach can be viable alternatives, but the expertise and advocacy of a divorce lawyer often lead to smoother and more satisfactory outcomes.

Although the cost of hiring a lawyer varies, the investment in legal counsel can prove invaluable during this challenging time of transition.

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