My husband wants to “leave the lawyers out of this.” Can we divorce without lawyers?
In some circumstances, it is perfectly acceptable to divorce without a lawyer. In others, it is a very bad idea. The answer to this question depends on your case and the issues at hand. Generally, the issues that make an attorney necessary surround children, assets, health insurance, cause for divorce, alimony and debt. If one or more of these issues exists in your case, consult with an attorney and strongly consider whether you require his/her services going forward. Don’t be afraid to ask the attorney if his/her representation is necessary and what s/he can do to assist you in these areas.
More often than not, when someone tells me that their spouse “doesn’t want lawyers involved,” it is in a situation where that spouse is the person who has something to lose. For example, a wife that makes less than her husband recently came to my office and said that her husband preferred to have no lawyers involved. In that situation, the husband, who made $75K more than the wife, wanted to share custody of their two minor children yet pay no child support whatsoever. H had convinced the wife that this was a fair arrangement and that lawyers would only “muddy the waters.” Thankfully, the wife didn’t listen, retained representation and negotiated a fair parenting plan and child support award.
It’s always best to seek a professional opinion even if you decide to go forward on your own.