Lawyer fees? Who pays them and how?

Tips on divorce for men considering or starting the divorce process. Get marriage separation tips for men in this divorce forum and child custody forum.

Re: Lawyer fees? Who pays them and how?

Unread postby TJinCA » Thu Dec 07, 2017 10:45 am

If your wife has the ability to pay, either out of her income or out of assets she gets in property division, she should be responsible for her own legal fees and you should be responsible for yours. If there were no significant assets and you had income and she didn't, the judge could tag you with both ends. If she argues for that, you need to counter with her ability to pay.

I believe most lawyers take credit cards. If you go that route, make sure you put your fees on a separate card in your name only so it's clear that it's your separate debt. Don't put it on a joint marital card. Make sure your wife is doing the same if she chooses to use a credit card. Any joint credit cards should be cut up at this point so no more marital debt is incurred.

Most attorneys will do an initial consult for free, so unless you've got a referral you trust it may be worth interviewing a couple to make sure you find one you like and trust. As noted by others, if you think attorneys are expensive try getting a divorce without one. Even if you choose to self-represent and do most of the legwork/paperwork yourself you should at least have an attorney on retainer to advise you.
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Re: Lawyer fees? Who pays them and how?

Unread postby jaysmitts » Thu Dec 07, 2017 11:02 am

BartSimpson wrote:Hello,

So, would you take your own appendix out? It’s cheaper and you know that all the Doctor is interested in is your money.

All you need is a sharp razor, some dental floss, and a bottle of whiskey. The instructions are on the internet - the hardest part is knowing how much to drink to get the courage and how much to save to sterilize the incision.

So, Mr. Cheapskate, would you take your own appendix out? Your idea of lawyers is similar to someone who would avoid the doctor for financial costs.

Do you know what lawyers charge?
Did you know you manage your own case, therefore your own fees?



Mr. Simpson. No, I would not take out my own appendix. I totally get your point. Thank you.
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Re: Lawyer fees? Who pays them and how?

Unread postby jaysmitts » Thu Dec 07, 2017 11:06 am

Campfire wrote:Jay,

My first attorney was around $350 per hour. My first month of legal fees was approximately $14,000.

I did not properly manage my attorney.



Since there are no children involved, your legal fees will likely be less than mine. What I can say is that it may behoove you to offer your wife a more equal share of marital assets if you think it could result in an easy peasy divorce.

Just curious, who makes more money, you or wifey? Any significant assets?


My income is almost twice as much as my wifes. Only asset is the equity we have in our home.

I would gladly give her anything she wants and I know I'm going to have to pay her alimony and I'm fine with that.

I just want out as soon as possible.
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Re: Lawyer fees? Who pays them and how?

Unread postby jaysmitts » Thu Dec 07, 2017 11:09 am

TJinCA wrote:If your wife has the ability to pay, either out of her income or out of assets she gets in property division, she should be responsible for her own legal fees and you should be responsible for yours. If there were no significant assets and you had income and she didn't, the judge could tag you with both ends. If she argues for that, you need to counter with her ability to pay.

I believe most lawyers take credit cards. If you go that route, make sure you put your fees on a separate card in your name only so it's clear that it's your separate debt. Don't put it on a joint marital card. Make sure your wife is doing the same if she chooses to use a credit card. Any joint credit cards should be cut up at this point so no more marital debt is incurred.

Most attorneys will do an initial consult for free, so unless you've got a referral you trust it may be worth interviewing a couple to make sure you find one you like and trust. As noted by others, if you think attorneys are expensive try getting a divorce without one. Even if you choose to self-represent and do most of the legwork/paperwork yourself you should at least have an attorney on retainer to advise you.


Thank you for that helpful info. All my cards and even checking account is in my name only.

Thanks
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Re: Lawyer fees? Who pays them and how?

Unread postby HaltAndCatchFire » Thu Dec 07, 2017 11:14 am

Attorney fees can be easily dwarfed by the amount of spousal support you will likely be paying for a long term marriage. You can't afford to not have an attorney for a long term marriage. The good news is that you're in the right place to learn how to manage your attorney.
The only way out is through.
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Re: Lawyer fees? Who pays them and how?

Unread postby lionel2013 » Thu Dec 07, 2017 11:31 am

I was hoping we could come up with an MSA in order to avoid huge legal fees which are probably only going to hurt everyone involved.


Your misconceptions are so bad it's not even funny ...

Where should i begin? Even if you can draft an MSA with your wifey at the kitchen table, unless you are fine with potentially screwing yourself for the rest of your life, you still need to have it thoroughly reviewed by an attorney. Sorry, let me clarify that. By your attorney, not any attorney. Meaning, you should not have one for the both of you. Suck it up and pay the $600-$700 for probably two hours worth of his or her time, it's for your own good.

When you say you are willing to give her everything just to get out, have you thought through all the material/financial consequences? Are you really that rich where you don't care?
Whenever you think divorce is bad, remember there are worse things than divorce.
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Re: Lawyer fees? Who pays them and how?

Unread postby dad2grls » Thu Dec 07, 2017 2:24 pm

jaysmitts wrote:I would gladly give her anything she wants and I know I'm going to have to pay her alimony and I'm fine with that.


Oh, well if you'll give her anything she wants then you don't need an attorney.

Just sign any paperwork she sends your way.

You'll get out fast and you won't have any attorneys fees.

You might lose all your material possessions and be paying her ridiculous amounts of support for the rest of your natural life, but hey, sounds like that doesn't matter to you. At least you've got your priorities figured out.
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Re: Lawyer fees? Who pays them and how?

Unread postby _ProudPoppa_ » Thu Dec 07, 2017 9:52 pm

OP-- a very common situation on this board starts with the divorcing couple being friendly and agreeable. The men usually remain that way and just want to be fair. But, wives get influenced by their girlfriends who convince them to go after everything. This is followed up by a visit to a lawyer who ensures them they will get everything. And she WILL! That is, if you don't go,out and immediately get a lawyer of your own.

Sure it's a bummer to spend the thousands of dollars to protect half of what is yours. But, it's better than losing all of it because you were being cheap.

All of just want it over with. But, don't sell yourself short. You gotta toughen up and stand up for yourself. Balls of steel. Read this forum, ask questions, and dig in. We're all here to help you, brother.
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Re: Lawyer fees? Who pays them and how?

Unread postby jaysmitts » Fri Dec 08, 2017 7:44 am

Thank you all for great advice. I will definitely bite the bullet and obtain a lawyer and see what they advise.

From the little I've read on these forums there sure is a lot of bitterness towards the exes. I guess divorces will do that to a person. Amazing the misery that two human beings will dump on each other. Anyways, thanks again and

I will be back later with more questions, I'm sure.

Thanks
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Re: Lawyer fees? Who pays them and how?

Unread postby lovingfatherof2 » Fri Dec 08, 2017 7:55 am

Its not bitterness

Just wait until you go through it yourself, then you will understand.
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