3 Expensive Problems You Face Representing Yourself During Divorce

Oct 12, 2016
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One of the biggest trends among those who are undergoing divorce revolves around a significant increase of husbands and wives choosing to represent themselves in court.

Reviews performed by the Nova Scotia Department of Justice show that 85 percent of people did not have lawyers in family court cases. Since 2006, the number of people undergoing divorce who represent themselves has jumped by 121 percent, which is a stunning number in what’s considered a rich province.

Some people end up running out of options after investing in a lawyer and discovering that the trial will extend past the time that the fees pay for. Others simply don’t want to spend any money to begin with, looking for the least expensive divorce possible. However, the following three problems that often pop up can cost you a lot more money than the fees that you’re attempting to save.

Problem #1 – Slow Court Processes

Since those who represent themselves usually don’t have the extensive experience that a family or a divorce lawyer possesses, the amount of time that the courts and judges have to spend on your case increases greatly when you don’t hire a lawyer. One of the most frustrating problems tends to be issues with providing the appropriate information and evidence for the people reviewing the case.

Instead of worrying whether or not a piece of information or evidence is useful to the divorce case, those who represent themselves in court often ended up providing as much detail as possible, regardless of whether or not it’s needed. Rather than an orderly trial, judges, and court workers have to sift through all the paperwork to find the details that pertain to your case. The longer a case lasts, the higher the cost for all involved in the long run.

Problem #2 – Tactical Errors

Typically, divorce court cases proceed because two sides end up having problems coming to an agreement about finances and child custody once the marriage dissolves. If your spouse ends up hiring a lawyer and you try to save some cash by representing yourself, you run the risk of making a tactical error that ends up placing your ex-spouse at an advantage.

Having a lawyer on your side helps to ensure that you don’t end up settling out of court when you could get a better deal, or vice versa. The best course of action isn’t always clear for court cases. Proceeding with an incorrect plan or strategy is one of the quickest ways of losing tons of money in a divorce settlement.

Problem #3 – Your Time Is Worth Money

The hours that you have to spend reading about the family court system and divorce proceedings will cut into time that you can invest in more profitable endeavors. Unfortunately, the more contentious the court case, the more time that you’ll spend going to and from a court, reading documents and studying the legal system. Stress that you endure will also make you less effective in matters of work and career, further eating into your bottom line.

Divorce Lawyers Save Time And Money

Divorce is hard enough, without having to decipher the Canadian legal system. The costs of representing yourself quickly mount, which places additional stress on your pocketbook during an already difficult time.

Galbraith Family Law lawyers are trained in Collaborative Practice, and we have been named the top firm by the Barrie Examiner multiple times. Our legal insights have also been featured in the Globe and Mail, as well as Lawyers Weekly.

Click here to contact us, or to schedule a consultation. Or you can call the local office listed at the top of the page.

About Brian Galbraith

Brian Galbraith is the owner and founder of Galbraith Family Law Professional Corporation. Brian is known in the legal community for his commitment to efficiently practicing family law using technology and streamlining the divorce processes.