Do-It-Yourself Divorce More Costly in the Long Run

You wouldn't buy over-the-counter medicine for a serious illness. Symptoms that seem simple might be a sign of a more serious problem. You would instead consult your doctor immediately and go in for an appointment to get a thorough diagnosis. And wouldn't this make a difference on the outcome?

The same holds true for handling your divorce. Divorce is a serious process with life-long implications, affecting you, your spouse a, and your children. Attempting a do-it-yourself divorce, while more cost effective in the beginning, can wind up being more expensive in the long run, not to mention the negative impact or consequences it can have on your life and the ones dearest to you.

A do-it-yourself divorce has gained momentum recently for those who feel they can't afford a divorce or simply want to cut costs. But this fill-in-the-blank method is not catered to your specific case and could actually damage your case.

Take a look at this quote from Florida Supreme Court Justice Barbara Pariente in a decision regarding the problems created by a woman who used an "E-Z Legal Form" to draft her own will.

"While I appreciate that there are many individuals in this state who might have difficulty affording a lawyer, this case does remind me of the old adage 'penny-wise and pound-foolish.' ...I therefore take this opportunity to highlight a cautionary tale of the potential dangers of utilizing pre-printed forms and drafting a will without legal assistance. As this case illustrates, that decision can ultimately result in the frustration of the testator's intent, in addition to the payment of extensive attorney's fees-the precise results the testator sought to avoid in the first place."

If you have a simple case that is uncontested, then it shouldn't be that expensive to have it handled the right way, the first time through a reputable family law attorney. If, however, you choose the do-it-yourself divorce, and problems come up later, there is a good chance that even the best family law attorney will not be able to correct them.

Source: Do-It-Yourself Divorce Is Not a Good Idea, By Ben Stevens, The Stevens Firm, P.A. Family Law Center