An important concern for anyone considering divorce is the financial cost of the process. How is a divorce paid for, and how do I ensure that I am being treated fairly?
Attorneys in divorces are paid for their time. Some legal professionals, such as personal injury attorneys who help auto accident victims recover compensation, are paid at the time of settlement or verdict. However, most attorneys, including family law attorneys, are paid throughout the process by the litigant who hired them.
A litigant is not shut out of representation if his/her spouse is the only breadwinner. Rather, New Jersey law indicates that the income of the breadwinner, bank account assets, a home equity line of credit, credit card or personal loan are all acceptable methods of funding the process. At a minimum, a retainer must be funded from one of these sources.
Some issues can become expensive. If the parties disagree about the children or if one of the parties owns a business, the fees can be significant. In every case, it is very important to carefully evaluate positions, problem solve the issues and minimize the costs.
Any good, experienced attorney will always ask for a retainer. If they are skilled, they are in high demand.
Retainers and fees are carefully disclosed in writing, and the attorney is required to issue regular bills and be prepared to explain all charges.