Get a Lawyer or File on Own

Updated on April 03, 2008
R.C. asks from Dallas, TX
10 answers

I am caught in a dilema, I am ready to proceed in my divorce after a yr and half apart. I am currently in debt, from my wedding. Financially, retaining a lawyer would be difficult. My mother offered to pay for me, BUT, she has helped everywhere he should have been helping, I hate to ask her for that. Should I just file on my own for little or nothing?

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So What Happened?

THANK YOU SO MUCH everyone for taking time to offer your advice, you don't know how they have helped. I am going to go with a lawyer, some men just need to be made to take care of their responsiblities and he is one of them. I going to start by contacting the lawyers, legal aids offices, and mediators and decide which one will be of most benefit to me. Thanks again, Ladies!!

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answers from Dallas on

Get some sort of representation. I truly believe that in the long run you will save money that way!!!!! Good luck, I know what you are going through must be very difficult.

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answers from Dallas on

There is a book available called "Do It Yourself Divorce, In Texas". You are only required to pay the court filing fee which is about $100 + (I think, been 18 years for me). Only hitch is that both parties have to sign the documents before they are filed. You should be able to at least look through the book in a local library to verify any questions you have. Good luck hope things go well with you and your divorce & future. My ex would never sign and I ended up getting a loan through my credit union to pay for a lawyer.



answers from Dallas on

DO NOT file on your own. Get a Lawyer!
Most of them will work with you on payments, but don't just get the cheapest get the best you can find.
I tried to do the do it yourself thing, even got some legal aid help b/c of my financial situation. All I can say is that 9 yrs later, my son and I are both paying for the problems that came from it. I still ended up paying a lawyer thousands of dollars (which he told me I wouldn't have had to pay if I had come to him in the first place), and I am about to be dragged back into court again. (His father hasn't seen him in almost two years, by his choice, but he's decided to take me to court for visitation).
I'm not saying that your case would end up this way, but divorce is an ugly messy thing and you are very emotionally involved. You need someone who understands the system and will fight for what is best for you and your children without getting emotional.
Just my two cents.



answers from Dallas on

Definitely get a lawyer or some representation if any of the children are his. You will want to make sure you have adequate support for them until they are grown. There are lots of things that you can do yourself, but this should not be one of them. Good luck!



answers from Dallas on

I agree with everyone else get a lawyer. I was in the same situation when I was going through a divorce. I went to the Martin Luther King center and received a lawyer. I did not have to pay the lawyer. The lawyers that come there will give you help but it is based on your income.



answers from Dallas on

R., if he is the father of any of your children, you should definitly get an attorney. I know you feel bad about asking your mom for help, but with an attorney you should be able to start getting the help you deserve from your soon to be ex. Hope this helps, and God bless! ~T.



answers from Dallas on

You should have your own representation, even if you choose collaborative law (typically cheaper than mediation, a form of mediation which is geared to be amicable - when you interview attorneys ask them if they practice it). Google: "collaborative law in Texas"

when I divorced my ex, I retained an expensive, high-powered attorney and he didn't and it made a big difference. Now knowing that he went on the cheap, I probably could have done the whole thing for a lot less, but I certainly got the better deal.

Best of luck.



answers from Dallas on

Hi R.,

I read all the replies that you got and decided to let you know that the legal advised you received was not all correct. I am a family law attorney in Fort Worth. I would love to chat with you for a minute. Please call me at ###-###-#### during the week. If you get the voice mail, please leave a message. I am in court quite a bit so I usually have to call everyone back. Just let me know that you are on Mamasource.

J. Duke



answers from Dallas on

Seems to me that if there is any money to split you need to get half of that. Furthermore, if there is money that is owed you should split that, as well--UNLESS the money owed was incurred prior to your marriage.

It is my opinion that you need to get an attorney since there will be child support set--well, I assume there will be. Is the 3 year old his? Does his income exceed yours? Will you be sharing custody? These things all depend on getting a lawyer. You need to look after the best interest of your CHILDREN.



answers from Dallas on

Hi, my friend got a divorce and didnt have to pay anything using the free legal aid, if you qualify this may help you out ALOT, here is a web site

Also, you can get free legal help through the texas attorney general for child support...

And if for some reason you dont qualify they also have low income programs or you can get them to make your ex husband pay your legal fees in the settlement...

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