What is the Average Cost of a Divorce? 

The average cost of a divorce involves attorney’s fees and court costs. While the attorney’s fees are the main expenses, the cost of the court will probably be the most significant. Depending on the situation, the parties may decide to split the cost of court costs. The most expensive fee is the filing fee, but there may also be other small fees that arise throughout the divorce proceeding. 


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Uncontested divorce costs at least $335 

Filing for an uncontested divorce in Colorado costs at least $335. While it may not be as expensive as a contested divorce, you still need to file certain forms and appear in court to have the proceedings finalized. In Colorado, you must have lived in the state for at least six months before filing for an uncontested divorce. The initial complaint costs $350. The cost of the divorce hearing can vary by county. 

If you and your spouse agree to a divorce agreement but your spouse refuses to sign the papers, you can file for an uncontested divorce. This type of divorce is also the least expensive, as the parties are likely to already be on good terms and agree on everything. In New York, a divorce can take anywhere from six to 12 months depending on the county you file in. You should also consider how much your divorce costs before filing. 

The flat rate billing structure 

Many divorce attorneys have a flat rate billing structure for divorce attorney fees. Flat fees are often limited to specific work. For example, drafting documents and appearing at a prove-up hearing are the most common flat-fee tasks. Of course, when the deal does not go as planned, the flat rate billing structure may not work out as planned. To avoid surprise charges, make sure you and your divorce attorney have a written fee agreement. 

While the traditional divorce attorney fee structure is based on hourly rates for attorneys, some lawyers also bill by the job. An attorney will bill you for the number of hours they spend on the case, multiplied by their hourly rate. For example, if you hire a divorce attorney who charges $300 an hour, you will end up with a $1200 bill. Also, some lawyers charge differently for different types of work. For instance, senior partners might charge higher fees than junior associates. Similarly, some lawyers charge separately for legal support. 

State-by-state variation in costs 

There is a wide range of charges in each state. In addition to filing fees, some states have varying cooling-off periods. Some may not require a cooling-off period. The cost of filing a divorce complaint varies greatly from state to state. Listed below are the typical costs in different states. These are not the final costs. Check with the county clerk’s office in your state to confirm costs. 

In some cases, attorneys’ fees depend on the complexity of the divorce. If there are many contested issues and a long court process, the cost of a divorce attorney’s services will rise. However, filing fees are not always as high as attorneys’ fees. Filing fees can reach $10,000 or more if the divorce is highly contested. Attorney fees may also be lower if the divorce is uncontested, though there are some exceptions to this rule. 

Consult a lawyer if you can’t afford 

You may be wondering: is it worth hiring a divorce attorney if you can’t afford his fees? Expenses for a divorce vary from state to state, and even within the same state, depending on the type of divorce and the issues involved. In New York, for example, divorce attorneys charge by the hour, and their hourly rates fall into a range between $205 and $380. This means that, if you’re not prepared to pay full attorney fees, you can still hire a consulting attorney to answer specific questions or prepare a settlement agreement. 

If you’re unsure whether you can afford a divorce attorney, it’s important, to be honest about your finances with your lawyer. While the process is stressful, being open about your finances will allow an attorney to give you the best advice possible. By providing the information you need to make an informed decision, you’ll be able to afford a divorce attorney without breaking the bank.