Legal Fees Awarded by the Court: Need Based and Fault Based

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Legal Fees Awarded by the Court: Need Based and Fault Based

Unread postby No·MAD » Sat Jan 15, 2005 7:03 pm

Original Author: Lawmoe

In a divorce proceeding, the Court may also require one party to pay all or a portion of the other party=s legal fees. The Court can award attorney's fees on one of two basis:

* Need Based
* Fault based


Need based legal fees may be awarded in an amount necessary to enable a party to carry on or contest the proceeding, provided that the Court finds:

(1) that the fees are necessary for the good-faith assertion of the party's rights in the proceeding and will not contribute unnecessarily to the length and expense of the proceeding;

(2) that the party from whom fees, costs, and disbursements are sought has the means to pay them; and

(3) that the party to whom fees, costs, and disbursements are awarded does not have the means to pay them.

Fault based fees may be awarded if the Court finds that one party has contributed unreasonably to the length and delay of the legal proceedings and thus increased the fees, costs, and disbursements related to the proceedings.


Divorce remains one of the most emotionally taxing experiences in life. If you have gone through a divorce or know someone who has, you know the pain and grief a litigated divorce can bring to both parties and to their children. You know how our adversarial system often promotes bitterness, needless expense, and emotional scars that may take years to heal. As a result, it is important to understand your issues and to explore alternatives to the court process.
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