Do Both Parties Have to Have an Attorney in a Divorce?

By Maggie Lourdes

The law does not require you and your spouse to hire separate lawyers for a divorce. You can fill out your own paperwork and represent yourself, or you can save time and attorney's fees by having an online legal document service fill out and file your paperwork for you. Parties generally do have separate attorneys in complicated or contested divorces in which they cannot agree on major issues to ensure the adequate protection of their own interests.

The law does not require you and your spouse to hire separate lawyers for a divorce. You can fill out your own paperwork and represent yourself, or you can save time and attorney's fees by having an online legal document service fill out and file your paperwork for you. Parties generally do have separate attorneys in complicated or contested divorces in which they cannot agree on major issues to ensure the adequate protection of their own interests.

Uncontested Divorces

An uncontested divorce is one in which the spouses agree on the division of property, debts, spousal support, and child custody and support if applicable. In an uncontested divorce, while the parties can choose to prepare and submit their own paperwork, one spouse can also retain an attorney to represent him and the other spouse can cooperate as a self-represented party. One attorney cannot legally represent both parties. If the parties cannot agree on any issues, they can opt to attend mediation to resolve their conflicts, or in some states, they must attend court-ordered mediation.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More
Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More
How Many Days Apart Equals a Legal Separation?

References

Related articles

Do It Yourself Divorce in Illinois

In Illinois, as in other states, both no-fault and fault divorce may be either contested or uncontested. While it is always advisable to seek legal counsel, you do not need a lawyer to obtain a divorce in Illinois; it is possible to obtain a divorce by simply filing the appropriate forms. An uncontested, no-fault divorce can move through the courts quickly. To file for divorce in Illinois, you or your spouse must have legally resided in the state for at least 90 days immediately prior to filing for divorce.

90 Day Cooling Off Period for a Divorce in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania requires a 90-day "cooling off" period for no-fault or "mutual consent" divorces, which provides an estranged couple the opportunity to resolve existing differences and salvage the marriage. If the husband and wife cannot resolve their disagreements in that time period, in most cases, a divorce decree can be issued by the court.

Contested Divorces in California

While some couples agree on financial and child custody issues in divorce cases, other do not. Sometimes only one issue remains unresolved, sometimes many. Divorce actions in which the spouses cannot come to agreement on all issues are referred to as contested divorces in California and must be taken to trial for resolution by the family court judge.

Get Divorced Online

Related articles

Guide to Uncontested Divorce in Minnesota

As compared with a contested divorce, filing an uncontested divorce may save Minnesota residents both time and money. ...

Oregon Divorce Mediation & Arbitration

Oregon courts encourage divorcing spouses to work together and resolve marital issues such as custody and property ...

Uncontested Divorce Documents and Requirements in Illinois

Conflict is often at the center of a divorce. If a couple can come to an agreement regarding how to end their marriage, ...

Can POA Supercede Spousal Rights?

A power of attorney, or POA, is a legal document you create to appoint a trusted individual to act for you, generally ...

Browse by category
Ready to Begin? GET STARTED