Should you have an attorney for a divorce?
If you are considering getting a divorce or your spouse has already filed for a divorce, it is definitely a good idea to get an attorney. The bottom line is that an attorney is something that you should get to protect yourself. You will have a lot of questions and you will definitely need to have the precise answers. Most importantly, you need to understand that there are a number of possible outcomes and an attorney can help you decide what you want to do in order to protect your future.
There is still the option of representing yourself in a divorce proceeding. Consequently, this is not always the recommendation. If there are serious issues at hand such as your children or assets, it is best to have the right answers from your attorney. The attorney can represent one of the parities involved, not both. If you are not able to afford an attorney, the judge may seek assistance for you from your spouse.
One important reason to get an attorney for a divorce proceeding is because there is often spousal support involved; this is called alimony. Depending on how long you were married, the age and health of the parties in court, and the ability for one of the parties to earn any income and maintain the marital standard of living, the court can order support to be paid by one spouse to another. This is not child support, but an entirely different issue.
Depending on the circumstances, spousal support can be for a limited time period or for an indefinite period . If circumstances change in the lives of one of the spouces, alimony can be reviewed again. If in fact the spousal support is waived, then the party giving up the support can't ever come back to ask the court to award it again.
You may also want to get an attorney to ensure that pensions and retirement accounts are protected. Pensions and retirement are marital property that can be divided in times of divorce. They can be given a present value based on the kind of pension and the parties' rights to receive an income from that pension. In most cases the court system is fair in this decision, but an attorney will fight for your rights and make sure that your side of the divorce is taken into account.
If you are not happy with the attorney that you have hired, you should definitely talk to them about it. Explain your case and make them understand why you are not happy with their work. If you cannot work out the situation with your attorney, remember that you do have the right to find another attorney at any point in the game.