Cost of a Divorce
Disagreements over finances are among the leading causes of divorce. It is not surprising, then, that many people who are considering ending their marriage have questions about the cost of divorce. While some fees are standard in divorce actions, the overall cost will vary depending on numerous factors. In many instances, though, regardless of the costs associated with obtaining a divorce, it is the best decision for the parties involved to legally sever their relationship. If you want to learn more about how dissolving your marriage will impact you financially, it is prudent to contact a knowledgeable attorney. The seasoned Dallas divorce attorneys of McClure Law Group can advise you of your options and help you to end your marriage while protecting your rights and your financial health.Filing Fees Associated with Texas Divorces
There are fees associated with filing a petition for dissolution, otherwise known as a divorce action, in Texas. The petitioner, or party filing for divorce, must pay a fee even if the divorce is uncontested. The fees vary by county; as of 2022, the minimum fee for filing a divorce action in Dallas County is $350. There may be additional fees as well, for things such as copies and serving the divorce petition on the responding spouse. People who cannot afford to pay the fees associated with filing a divorce action can apply for a waiver. Generally, they must prove one of the following to receive a waiver: that they receive government benefits because they are indigent, are either represented by a free lawyer through a legal aid service or are financially eligible for such services, or do not have sufficient means to pay for their basic needs and court fees.Factors that Impact the Cost of a Divorce in Texas
In addition to filing fees, people seeking a divorce usually have to pay legal fees. While some people may be tempted to handle divorce proceedings without the assistance of an attorney to cut down on costs, it is generally unwise to do so. People who are not represented by an attorney are more likely to inadvertently waive their rights or agree to unfavorable terms, which can be far more detrimental than having to pay an attorney, or they may fail to divide up all marital assets and debts, which could lead them to returning to court months or years later.
Divorce attorneys typically charge their clients per hour, but their hourly rates vary. Certain factors can lead to a lengthier divorce process, which in turn, can increase the overall fees. For example, legal fees are usually much higher in contested divorces than in uncontested matters. Additionally, divorces involving minor children will require the parties and the court to determine custody rights, which typically takes much longer, thereby increasing costs. If a couple has extensive assets, like property, retirement and investment accounts, or businesses, they may have to hire forensic accountants and engage in extensive discovery to determine whether such property is marital or separate, or a combination of both. Fault-based divorces, as the name suggests, require the petitioner to establish that the responding spouse caused the downfall of the marriage, which generally makes the case contentious and results in protracted litigation. The manner in which a case is handled can affect costs as well; for example, collaborative divorces and those resolved through mediation or arbitration are typically less expensive than those that proceed to trial.Confer with an Experienced Dallas Attorney
It is important for people who are considering ending their marriage to understand how it can affect them financially. If you or your spouse intend to file for divorce, it is smart to confer with an attorney to discuss your expectations. The experienced Dallas lawyers of McClure Law Group can analyze the facts of your case and help you determine the best option to proceed to seek your desired outcome. More importantly, the attorneys at McClure Law Group take steps to ensure that costs are minimized as best possible during each of our cases. Our primary office is in Dallas, and we are available to meet clients for consultation at our Collin-County office in Plano. We regularly represent people in divorce cases in Dallas, Rockwall, Fort Worth, McKinney, Frisco, Richardson, Irving, and Garland. We also assist people with family-law issues in cities in Dallas, Rockwall, Collin, Tarrant, Denton, and Grayson Counties. You can contact us via our online form or by calling us at 214.692.8200 to set up a confidential consultation.