If you’re filing for divorce, one of your first big decisions will be deciding if it’s worth it to hire an attorney to represent you. Unless you have extensive knowledge in family law, a lot of extra time on your hands, and an uncanny ability to remove yourself emotionally from your situation, it’s rarely ever a good idea to represent yourself in your own divorce case. So what are the benefits of hiring a professional, and why should you be wary of self-representation?
Hiring an Attorney can Save you Money in the Long Run
While it may be tempting to sidestep the hiring process in order to save money initially, there’s a good chance that in doing so you’ll end up hurting yourself in the long run. If you’re not familiar with family law and your own legal rights, it’s possible that you won’t receive all that you’re entitled to in the divorce settlement. Additionally, it’s also possible that you may accidentally and unknowingly make an incriminating statement that can be used against you. Dividing assets is a complicated matter. There are lot of factors that you may miss or be unaware of and thus end up shorting yourself from monetary benefits.
Self-Representation is a Timely Matter
The amount of time it takes to serve as your own legal representative is no small undertaking, and can easily amount up to a second job. You will essentially need to become a master of an entirely new skill set—being well versed with family law and understanding how to navigate the court system—and that takes time. If you already have a job, kids, or both, this can lead to high stress and a sense of being a slave to your own divorce. Hiring an attorney allows you to continue your day-to-day schedule, will greatly lighten your load of responsibilities, and will likely speed up the divorce process as a whole.
Emotions Won’t Win a Case
Perhaps one of the biggest challenges of self-representation is the necessity to remain level-headed amongst the whirlwind of emotions surrounding a divorce, especially if your case goes to court. When you’re the person being directly affected by the opposing party, it’s difficult to remain objective. It’s not a judge’s responsibility to advocate on your behalf because you’re “new” to court and they won’t give favor to intemperate emotions—they give favor to well presented facts that align with the law and rules of the court. An attorney is able to fight for your case in a pragmatic and composed state, and offers the best chance of achieving the outcome that you’re hoping for in your settlement.
Every industry has its professionals—people who know their trade like the back of their hand, and thus can guarantee the best outcome to their clients or patients. Just like you trust your doctor to heal you and your mechanic to fix your car, you should also trust an achieved and capable attorney, like those at Pacific Cascade Family Law, to fight for your legal rights and make your divorce process as quick and trouble-free as possible.