what does the average divorce lawyer cost

by Patricia Casper 8 min read

How much do divorce lawyers make on average?

These charts show the average base salary (core compensation), as well as the average total cash compensation for the job of Divorce Lawyer in the United States. The base salary for Divorce Lawyer ranges from $72,186 to $97,950 with the average base salary of $84,677.

How much is it to hire an attorney for divorce?

  • The parties will share joint legal custody of the children
  • Betty will have sole physical custody of the children
  • Jim will have parenting time as agreed
  • Neither party will pay spousal maintenance
  • Jim will pay child support of $800 a month until there is only one child and support will drop to $500 a month.

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How do divorce lawyers make so much?

  • every communication you have with them (whether by phone, text, or email), from quick status phone calls to dealing with your email about who gets the Instapot
  • communicating with your spouse’s attorney (or directly with your self-represented spouse) and anyone else involved in the case
  • reviewing documents and performing research

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What does a family divorce attorney cost on average?

The average cost for a divorce lawyer is $250 an hour and you will spend around $15,000 total. Hiring a divorce lawyer for representation, you will likely spend between $100 and $650 per hour. The price of a divorce lawyer can vary greatly by region (and even by zip code). View our local divorce lawyers or get free estimates from lawyers near you.


Typical Hourly Rate For Divorce Attorneys

Although most people would prefer to have an attorney by their side when going through a divorce, many also worry about how much this will cost. Ev...

The Average Total Cost of Divorce

When all is said and done, what did the average person pay, in total, to get divorced? This figure includes total attorney’s fees, court costs, and...

How Long Does The Average Divorce Case take?

Another pressing question among people deciding to divorce: How long will it take? According to the results from our survey, the average time it to...

How much does a divorce attorney cost?

The total cost of a divorce is about $15,000, but can go as high as $100,000 depending on how many issues you want a judgment on ...

How much does it cost to file for divorce?

The cost will vary from state to state, but typically it’s about $300 , which can sting, considering the circumstances.

What is retainer fee?

These retainer fees are based on a divorce attorney’s hourly rate. The size of the retainer will depend on the issues discussed in an initial consultation—namely child custody, child support, alimony or spousal support, the division of property, and the division of debts.

How much does a private meditation cost?

The hourly rate for private meditation ranges, typically costing anywhere between $100 to $1,000 per hour. However, the final cost will depend on the factors discussed below. Typically, the total cost of divorce mediation is anywhere between $500 and $1,500+.

How much does Edwards Family Law charge per hour?

There are some very respectable attorneys and firms who offer a flat rate billing structure in order to keep the billing process simple for the client, such as Edwards Family Law in Atlanta, GA, who offer $295 per hour office time and $325 per hour court time.

What is more important than paying a lawyer?

Far more important than what you are paying your lawyer and the courts is hiring the right attorney. Do your research based on what you can afford, and find the right representation to protect what you have at stake.

Is divorce time consuming?

Divorces can be time-consuming and messy, and the issues in each divorce are different from one couple to the next. Because the outcome of every divorce is determined by the defendants, the attorneys, and what is at stake, it’s nearly impossible to find a standard overall cost.

How much does a divorce attorney cost?

In our survey, the median total for attorneys' fees was $7,000. It may also help to know that more than four in 10 people in our survey (42%) paid $5,000 or less in attorneys' fees.

How much does a divorce lawyer make an hour?

The first part of the total bill for a divorce lawyer is the hourly rate. Our survey showed an average rate of $270 an hour for divorce lawyers across the United States, but individual rates varied a lot. Although nearly seven in ten people (69%) paid between $200 and $300 an hour, about one in ten (11%) paid $100 per hour, and two in ten (20%) paid $400 or more. Our separate study on hourly rates reported by family lawyers across the U.S. showed significant regional differences, with the highest rates reported by attorneys in large cities on the coasts. The same study also showed that rates were higher for more experienced attorneys—no big surprise there.

What is Nolo for divorce?

Nolo is in a unique position to gather information about what actually happens in divorce cases across the country. Thousands of people visit Nolo.com and other Nolo sites every day, seeking legal information about divorce and looking to connect with divorce attorneys.

Why do people use mediation in divorce?

More and more divorcing couples are turning to mediation as a way to save money—as well reduce the conflict and stress of divorce. You can use divorce mediation in a wide range of circumstances. For example:

What is a national survey of people who have recently been through a divorce?

We conducted a national survey of people who had recently been through a divorce to ask them details about their experiences. As a result, we were able to analyze the connections between their costs and some important features of their divorce cases. We then supplemented our survey results with independent research into fees charged by divorce lawyers, mediators, and online divorce services.

How much does it cost to get divorced without a lawyer?

In our survey, people who handled their divorce without hiring a lawyer had an average of $925 in costs, not including the cost of mediation. More typical, however, was the median cost of $300. Let's look at what went into those expenses, as well as mediation fees.

When do you need mediation for divorce?

Some states require mediation (or allow judges to require it in individual cases) when couples have filed for divorce but haven't come to an agreement about certain issues—especially child custody.

How much does it cost to divorce a spouse?

While many factors can change the overall cost, it is typical for each spouse to spend $10,000 or more to complete their divorce.

How much does a lawyer charge?

It is typical for new lawyers to charge $100+/hour and experienced attorneys to charge $300+/hour. You can expect to see outlier pricing that ranges from $30 to $500/hour as well.

What are the classes for divorce?

Education classes on the divorce process or co-parenting. Mediation (this can replace attorney fees or be in addition to attorney fees) Psychiatric evaluations for adults or children. Refinancing a mortgage.

What are the requirements for a divorce?

In every state, a variety of factors will change the hours required to negotiate and find a divorce agreement such as: 1 Child custody 2 Amount of property 3 Tax advice 4 Alimony (spousal support)

What factors affect the hours required to negotiate a divorce?

In every state, a variety of factors will change the hours required to negotiate and find a divorce agreement such as: Child custody. Amount of property. Tax advice. Alimony (spousal support) Consider how complex your divorce is when estimating how much it might cost.

Do divorce lawyers have to have a payment plan?

Yes , most law firms or independent attorneys understand that an average divorce costs a large sum of money, and may need a payment plan. There are no state laws on offering payment plans, so this is solely up the firm you want to hire. Ask them in your first meeting if they offer payment plans.

Can you get an uncontested divorce?

An uncontested divorce is possible if you can negotiate together and agree on big-ticket items such as who keeps the house. If you want the court to help you determine how things are split (in a contested divorce), you will rack up additional attorney's fees.

How much does a divorce lawyer cost in 2021?

As of 2021, the average cost of divorce lawyer is approximately $250 ...

How to find a low cost divorce lawyer?

You can find a less expensive divorce attorney by performing a quick online search using the phrase, “low cost divorce lawyer near me,” and reading the reviews of former clients of any attorneys that come up in the search results.

What happens if a divorce lawyer charges less by the hour?

In general, the less time that a lawyer who bills by the hour spends on a case, the lower their final bill will likely be. In contrast, a divorce lawyer who charges less by the hour, but who also has less experience can end up needing additional time to research issues that a more qualified attorney already knows.

Why do people hire divorce lawyers?

One other advantage to hiring a divorce lawyer is that they can help the parties to focus on the task at hand and can steer them away from the more emotional aspects of divorce.

How can a divorce lawyer determine when there may be less expensive solutions for the parties to pursue in obtaining a?

Divorce lawyers can also determine when there may be less expensive solutions for the parties to pursue in obtaining a divorce by simply reviewing the facts of a case.

What is the complexity of a divorce?

The complexity of the legal issues involved in a divorce case; Whether the divorce decree will include arrangements for child custody, child visitation rights, and/or child support; The amount of items that still need to be negotiated before the final divorce proceeding;

What can a lawyer do for you?

Your lawyer will be able to assist you with more complicated matters, such as negotiating child custody, child visitation rights, and child support. Your lawyer can also help to ensure certain protections are complied with regarding your assets and property, depending on the marital property laws in your state.

How much does it cost to get divorced?

For example, a divorce in New York City will cost more than a divorce in Vermont. Hourly rates can vary from several hundred dollars to more than $500.

How much does an uncontested divorce cost?

If you do your own divorce papers and your divorce is amicable, costs could be under $500. Of course, there are filing fees in all states, which increase the cost.

How to save money on divorce?

A good way to save money on your divorce is to do your divorce without a lawyer. In many states, this means being pro se. In California, if you file on your own behalf, you're pro per. If you have an uncontested divorce, you and your spouse can create your own agreement.

What factors determine the cost of divorce?

Things that factor into the cost of a divorce include: Where you're getting divorced. Whether you're using a lawyer for your entire divorce or only part of it. Whether you have children. Whether you're doing it yourself.

What are the most common questions people have when they are learning about divorce?

One of the most common questions people have when they are learning about divorce is, "How much will their divorce cost ?"

What do you do when you use a lawyer?

Preparing for court. Preparing for depositions and discovery . Preparing and reviewing paper s. Legal research. If you're using a lawyer just for reviewing documents, you will cut thousands of dollars from your bill. You can also agree with your lawyer that you'll only pay for some services and not others.

Is legal separation as expensive as divorce?

In many cases, a legal separation is as expensive as a divorce. Discuss this with your lawyer to see if there's any advantage to getting separated, or if your state requires a legal separation before divorce. Get help with divorce LEARN MORE. About the Author.

How much does divorce cost?

It’s about half the average cost of a U.S. wedding —just over $30,000. And remember, $15,000 is an average; some folks have paid $1,000, and others have paid well over $100,000.

What are the factors that affect the cost of divorce?

That being said, certain factors are likely to impact the cost of your divorce, including where you live, your current relationship with your spouse, whether your spouse is contesting the divorce, and the number of issues you have to resolve.

How long does a divorce mediation take?

The average length of divorce mediation is determined by how well the couple makes decisions together, but usually takes much less time—even months—rather than a typical litigated divorce, which can last years.”.

How many divorces end in divorce?

According to the American Psychological Association, up to 50 percent of U.S. marriages end in divorce, levying both an emotional and financial toll on the entire family. Every case is unique, however, and the monetary cost can be just as high, or just as low, as the emotional cost.

How long does it take to get divorced with kids?

When kids are involved, divorces take an average of 11 months and typically cost more than those not involving children. How much more is dependent on multiple factors, including whether the case goes to trial and how easily a custody agreement can be reached.

Can a divorce lawyer represent one spouse?

If your divorce is relatively amicable, mediation may be an option. Whereas a divorce lawyer can only represent one spouse in the divorce proceedings, a mediator (who may also be an attorney) is a neutral third party hired by both spouses to resolve their differences cooperatively.

Do attorneys charge money for engagements?

According to Elise Pettus, founder of UNtied, an online resource for women going through or contemplating divorce, it’s important to remember that every attorney-client interaction costs money, even if the engagement only lasts a few minutes, and even if it’s over the phone. Many lawyers bill in increments of six minutes or less.

How much does a divorce lawyer cost?

Divorce lawyer hourly costs range between $100 and $400 or even over. the cost is usually determined by the experience of the lawyer, the type of case and household income. On average hourly rates for divorce Lawyers are:

How much does a divorce attorney charge?

Divorce attorneys can charge an average of about $ 5000 including the attorney’s fees. In states with low standards of living the cost, this figure could be low with those with high standards of living pay relatively high amounts. Note the $5000 covered here is exclusive of the costs incurred by the other party.

Why do contested divorces cost more?

This is because the couples usually have issues that need to be resolved Infront of a charge adding more costs. Statistics have it that near 30% of divorce cases are uncontested meaning that contested divorce cases form a majority of cases in the country.

How much does an uncontested divorce cost?

Often the process is usually straight forward and may not require the help of a divorce lawyer or mediator. The average cost for an uncontested divorce ranges from $1500 to $2000. This includes the cost of everything needed to complete the divorce process.

How to find a divorce lawyer?

We recommend the best way to find a Divorce lawyer cost is to use a Free Pro listing service such as skillsetcity.com to find, hire and check reviews on qualified professionals. When researching, there are some critical key features to look for. The key point is to work with a Professional that makes you feel comfortable doing the task for you.

What determines the cost of a divorce lawyer?

The overall simplicity of a case is what determines the cost of a divorce lawyer. The cost of any divorce can steadily rise and the but the cost of the lawyer form a large portion of the general divorce costs. The simplest divorce case can be the mediation or collaborative divorce while contested divorce cases are the most complex. What is making it complex and costly?

What does it mean to hire an experienced lawyer?

An experienced attorney will know how to work things fast and should be at the position to use his knowledge of the field to your advantage. What does this mean? You should hire a specialised lawyer. Often people will hire lawyers from other fields thinking that any attorney can do. However, divorce and family law are a specialised field that requires specialised know-how.

How much does a divorce cost?

And because courts in certain states, cities and counties have different fees, your location can impact costs as well. For these reasons, the total average divorce cost can exceed $10,000 or even $20,000, according to various surveys and reports.

How much does it cost to get divorced?

For example, the filing fee can range from as little as $85 if you’re filing in Wyoming to $435 if you’re divorcing in California.

Why do lawyers charge hourly fees?

There are many factors that go into why an attorney charges a certain hourly rate. Usually, it’s based on their level of experience and what the average rate is in your locality. An experienced lawyer in a major metropolitan area will likely charge more than one who practices in a small town. Some might also charge a different hourly fee for separate family law matters like mediation, child support or custody than they would to litigate a divorce.

What happens if a divorce is contested?

If your divorce case is contested and you and your spouse cannot agree on the issues that must be resolved prior to the court granting a dissolution, expect to pay much more. Contested divorces are lengthier and can involve a lot of time spent in court. They may also involve an extensive discovery process to obtain financial information and other documents relevant to the case.

How much does a retainer cost?

Depending on the complexity of the case, a retainer can cost several thousand dollars .

How to keep costs down in divorce?

Mediation or collaborative divorce. Keeping your divorce out of court or as amiable as possible is the best way to keep divorce costs down. Mediation and collaborative divorces are cost-effective alternatives to litigation. They can help both parties reduce conflict and allow them to control their case's outcome.

How much does it cost to get divorce papers served?

Once you're done filing your divorce papers with the court, they will need to be served to your soon-to-be ex-spouse by a process server, which typically costs between $50 and $70.

How much does a lawyer cost for a divorce?

The average cost for a lawyer in an uncontested divorce is around $1,000. This, however, can be higher in larger cities. If a divorce goes all the way to trial, couples can spend upwards of $20,000 each.

How much does a divorce lawyer charge per hour?

In instances where a lawyer charges by the hour, prices for family law attorneys usually range between $150 to $250 per hour for divorce proceedings, but can get to upwards of $650 per hour if your case is complicated and contested.

How much does divorce cost?

As a whole, in 2019, the average cost of a divorce in the United States is around $15,000 per person, which includes things like attorney’s fees, filing charges, court costs, and hiring outside experts.

Is mediation part of divorce?

Mediation can either be part of the legal divorce process, or it can be an option taken by both parties to avoid hiring an attorney and looking to the courts for a solution or agreement. It usually involves both parties coming together in front of a professional to discuss the issues in the marriage, as well as the overall outcome both parties are hoping for after the dust settles and a divorce is finalized.

Does legal separation end marriage?

While it divides your assets, establishes custody agreements, and essentially creates a legal separation between yourself and your partner, a legal separation does not terminate or formally end your marriage. Whereas you still receive some of the benefits of being married with a legal separation, such as social security and pension, the cost of filing and implementing a legal separation is often similar to that associated with divorce.

Does divorce increase the cost of divorce?

There are other factors that go into a divorce proceeding that can increase the overall cost, regardless of whether or not you have hired an attorney to represent you. For example, in cases where there are children involved, and a question of custody is raised, courts can sometimes require that a psychologist or child custody evaluator come in and assess what is best for the children. This often comes at a cost to the couple.