For those who are facing a divorce, it may be tempting to try to save money by not hiring a lawyer. Giving one’s spouse the benefit of the doubt and placing enough goodwill in the process and in their judgement to avoid hiring a lawyer may also seem like a reasonable path. But the truth is that in almost all cases, it isn’t. Unfortunately, in all but the simplest and most amicable divorces, not hiring a lawyer will inevitably amount to a grave error.
Why you need a lawyer
Divorces almost universally result in some degree of animosity. This is bad enough by itself. But when the future of children and the disposition of hundreds of thousands of dollars in assets are at stake, it is a recipe for contention and zero-sum jostling that almost never fails to materialize. The truth is that, at some point, most divorces will get nasty.
And when they do, having an experienced divorce lawyer on your side who is willing to fight hard to get you the best possible resolution can quite literally be close to invaluable. Divorce proceedings and the judgments arising from them are nigh irreversible in almost all states throughout America. And when you go before a judge in family court, that judge holds the power to make or break your future. Just as you would not attempt to represent yourself at a murder trial in which you were completely innocent of the charges, you should never attempt to represent yourself in a divorce proceeding in which you will almost certainly be slandered, accused of things you didn’t do and in which the final verdict will be as binding and, often, as long-lasting as the sentence handed down to a convicted murderer.
Considerations for men
Today, nearly 80 percent of divorces are initiated by women. This is a relatively new phenomenon, which has only emerged over the last 20 to 30 years. But that statistic alone reflects some particularly ugly truths that any man looking at a potential divorce should acquaint himself with quickly and without flinching.
The truth is that women are incentivized to initiate divorces due to the likelihood of being awarded large sums of hard money, valuable property and primary custody of the children. Although you may have deeply trusted your wife at one time, once it is clear that a divorce is imminent, you must realize that you are now dealing with an adversary in a zero-sum contest.
The harsh reality is that women, even good women, can have their ethical compasses jammed when the incentives become strong enough. When there are hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars at stake, and there exists the real possibility that she may be awarded that and much more in the form of alimony payments, then there is no option but to hire the best divorce attorney that you can find. Failure to do so will all but ensure that you will see the majority of the fruits of your life’s work stripped from you and handed to someone who, in all likelihood, is now engaged in a flat-out predatory gambit.
The necessity for men to hire the best and most experienced divorce attorney almost cannot be overstated. A good attorney can prevent the worst outcomes from materializing, helping you to retain your hard-earned assets and get a fair custody arrangement with your children.