Do You Really Need A Divorce Lawyer?

Apr 18, 2024

It’s common for someone on the brink of divorce to ask this question. You might be thinking, “I can save money by handling it on my own” or “My spouse and I still get along, we don’t need lawyers getting involved” or “We weren’t married that long, so our divorce should be simple.” While these may all sound like good and valid reasons to skip the attorney in the moment, this decision may end up costing you later.

We don’t want to see that happen; we’re here to tell you that no matter your circumstances, you do need a divorce attorney! Divorce is a complex legal process as well as an incredibly emotional one. Even if you aren’t feeling particularly emotional right now, for whatever reason, sometimes our true feelings have a way of surprising us when we least expect them. Moreover, just because you think you have a plan in place for getting through your divorce doesn’t mean everything will go the way you think it will or should.

In this blog, we’ll give you the top 4 most important reasons you need a divorce lawyer by your side, no matter what!

1. A divorce lawyer understands the complexities of the law.

Unless you also attended law school, passed the bar, and have years of experience in practicing divorce law under your belt, you likely don’t understand just how complex this field truly is. There are many factors in a divorce that can make this already-complex process even more complicated, like a high-net-worth, custody and child support disagreements, a family business, pre-nups or post-nup agreements, and more. Even if none of these are relevant to your divorce, the fact still remains that you don’t know what you don’t know, and there is likely a lot you don’t know about the divorce laws specific to Ohio.

An attorney has honed their skills over hundreds of cases with unique and differing circumstances, meaning they have a wealth of knowledge and experience in their tool kit. They also likely know the tendencies of the family court judge presiding over your case, and possibly even that of the opposing counsel.

2. A divorce lawyer will ensure that your rights are protected.

Because you likely don’t have a true understanding of the complexities of the law, you may not be aware of your rights in divorce, or recognize when they are being violated. In general, you have the right to a fair and equitable distribution of marital property and debts (though that doesn’t always mean equal), the right to seek spousal support, the right to child custody and visitation that prioritize the best interests of your children, the right to seek child support to assist with the financial needs of your children, and the right to a fair and just process that upholds your legal rights and protects your interests. Having an attorney who will help you understand and assert your rights is essential for safeguarding your future and enduring a fair resolution of your divorce.

3. A divorce lawyer can provide comprehensive legal guidance.

You may have an idea of what you want the outcome of your divorce to be, whether that means you get X amount of money and property, Y amount of support each month, or Z custody arrangement. However, you probably wouldn’t know how to reach those results on your own. Because your divorce lawyer is knowledgeable and experienced in the complexities of divorce law, they are in a position to then help guide you through them and put you in the best position for achieving your desired outcome. For example, your attorney knows:

  • What the residency requirements are for divorce in Ohio
  • What the legal grounds for divorce are in Ohio
  • What the grounds for spousal supports, and what factors a judge will consider in their decision
  • How marital property is divided in Ohio
  • How child custody and child support is determined in Ohio
  • The grounds for both contested and uncontested divorce in Ohio, as well as how to file
  • And more.

Additionally, your attorney can handle the extensive amount of paperwork and documentation that a divorce entails on your behalf, including petitions, financial disclosures, and settlement agreements. They can also help you better understand all of your options, such as alternative dispute resolution methods like mediation or collaborative divorce.

Above all, your attorney can offer you objective advice. It’s easy to get lost in your anger or sadness or regret and lose sight of your end-goal, but an attorney has no emotional attachments to you or your spouse. They will keep you grounded and focused, help you make rational and beneficial decisions, and tell you what you need to know – even when it’s hard to hear.

4. A divorce lawyer can ensure fair division of your assets.

As already stated, Ohio is known as an equitable division state when it comes to the distribution of the marital property and debts. However, this doesn’t necessarily always mean that it will be equal. You may not be fully aware of what exactly is considered “marital property,” which can put you at a disadvantage if you don’t have an attorney there to inform you. In Ohio, marital property includes any assets acquired during the marriage, which commonly mean the marital home, personal property, bank accounts, and retirement benefits.

Separate property is defined as those assets acquired before the marriage, or during the marriage but only allocated to one spouse (such as gifts, inheritances, and some personal injury awards). Playing a guessing game with your finances is not in your best interest; in order to ensure you get the fair share you are entitled to, you need an experienced attorney on your side.

A Proficient Attorney Could Make All The Difference In The Outcome Of Your Divorce. Trust Dailey Law Offices To Fight For You!

There may be many reasons tempting you to pursue divorce on your own, but you may be opening the door to committing risky mistakes. Don’t take the chance that you’ll reach the end of your divorce, only to look back and think “I would have fared better with an attorney.”

Our lead divorce attorney, Stephanie Dailey, has 20 years of experience and an unmatched level of dedication, efficiency, and professionalism. Choosing Dailey Law Offices will never make you regret having an attorney by your side through each step of your divorce! Call today to schedule your free consultation and learn more about how we can serve you.