What Will My Divorce Cost?

Like any other legal process, getting a divorce costs money. The full price of the process, however, largely depends on the individual case. Consider the following costs associated with divorce in Virginia:

Legal Fees and costs

In most cases, attorneys bill by the hour. This means that for every hour an attorney works on a case, they bill a certain, previously agreed upon amount. This amount can range from a few hundred dollars to over a thousand dollars for the most highly sought after attorneys in the nation. The hourly rate billed by attorneys depends mostly on the law firms employing them, their position at the firms and their experience level. Prior to beginning any work on a divorce in Virginia, attorneys and clients should execute a fee agreement that sets out the hourly rates of the matter. Clients are also often responsible for copying fees, postage, and other administrative costs of litigation.

Uncontested vs. Contested

Uncontested divorces, or matters with no issues to be determined by the court, may cost significantly less than contested matters simply because they require fewer hours to complete. When divorces are tumultuous, they can drag on and require extensive negotiations. This takes time, and that time usually results in greater legal fees. The costs become greater if a case does not settle and must be decided by a trial judge. However, individuals may request that the other party pay all legal fees and costs associated with the divorce in Virginia. Whether a court will award attorney fees, though, is in each particular judge’s discretion.

Court Fees and Service

To file documents to start a divorce, parties must pay filing fees to the court. Additional fees are required to legally serve the documents on the other party as well.

While it may not be ideal, parties should understand that divorce proceedings take time to be done correctly. If proper care is not given, the results could affect both individuals for the rest of their lives.

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Matt Kurylo

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