Divorce is an emotional, personal process, but it is also a financial one. While some expenses are unavoidable, others are not. You can take certain steps to avoid mistakes that could end up costing you more than you want to spend.
Going to court
Generally speaking, litigating a divorce will be more costly than resolving legal matters outside of court with alternatives like mediation.
Going to court can cost more because:
- It can take much longer
- You may need to hire experts to testify
- There is a lengthier discovery process
- There are more legal fees associated with motions, filings and court appearances
- Court rulings could result in less money for you than what you might have gotten through negotiation
If you have the opportunity to negotiate agreements, refusing to can be an expensive decision.
During a divorce, you may be scared, defensive and angry toward your ex. You might feel tempted to lie in an effort to protect yourself or hurt the other person, but doing so can be unlawful and a financial mistake.
For instance, if you make false allegations about your ex or misrepresent your finances, there are consequences. Lies, both oral and written, can trigger criminal charges and fines when a person is under oath. Additionally, the courts might award a larger financial share to your ex as a punitive action.
Misusing social media
Everything you say and do online can be under scrutiny during a divorce, so it is crucial to sign onto social media with caution. Harassing your ex or making disparaging comments about them can make the other person less willing to resolve divorce matters amicably.
Further, your social media activities could cast you in a negative light in the eyes of the courts, which could result in less favorable outcomes.
Fighting for the wrong things
You might wind up spending much more on your divorce if you fight for the wrong things. For example, you might devote significant resources to keeping your marital home only to learn you cannot afford to keep it on your own or ultimately don’t want it.
To avoid this misstep, you can talk to an attorney who can provide the guidance and answers you need to manage realistic expectations and make informed decisions.
If your goal is to minimize the cost of your divorce, avoiding these mistakes can be a good place to start.