DRCLogo Wide v06 Web 01

Maryland’s authoritative guide to divorce.

Divorce is 40 percent legal work and 60 percent emotional work. Clients often use their divorce attorneys as therapists or social workers, which runs up the legal bill. Often you will have a better outcome if use the right professional for the job. Child custody issues? Consider a child specialist. Financial issues? Consider a financial neutral. Legal issues? Consider a family law attorney. If you are thoughtful about the way you utilize your divorce professionals, you can reduce the cost of your divorce significantly.

Here are some tips from our professionals on ways to reduce your divorce fees:

  • Consider requesting that an associate attorney (whose billing rate is lower) handle the matter.
  • Write down all your questions, objectives, important facts, and comments, save them up for the week, and send them to us in writing so that we may accurately document the file.
  • Send us one email or call us with all your weekly questions or issues. You may call your divorce professional after hours in the event of an emergency but remember that there is an extra cost associated with after-hours calls. Consider whether the issue can wait until normal business hours. Often, your question can be answered by a paralegal at a lesser cost.
  • Take the bull by the horns: you will likely be asked to gather documents. When this occurs, put the documents in an order which is easily understandable and create an index of the documents. Highlight those documents which you believe are most important, if applicable.
  • Type out your response to a letter or pleading, or hand-write your responses on underlying documents from the other party, and fax or email the documents back to us.
  • If we send you a Word Document, make changes or comments using “Track Changes,” which are easily accepted for a final version.
  • If you have a discussion with the other party (your partner, spouse, ex or the parent of your child), send a quick note about what was discussed and any agreements you made, so we do not waste resources on issues which may have already been resolved.

Most importantly, respond to us in a timely fashion. If you have “homework,” get it done and forward the information needed as quickly as possible. If we send you a draft letter, follow up with us and let us know whether you feel changes are needed, or whether we have your permission to send the document as is.