Getting a divorce is going to be stressful, but there are times where it’s regrettably the only solution to an untenable situation. There are a lot of decisions to make, and one of the first is whether to get an attorney. The short answer is pretty simple: you probably need one. However, they may not be necessary in some limited situations. Here’s when you won’t automatically need a divorce lawyer in Salt Lake City.
No Children or Real Estate Is Involved
If you have children, you must have an attorney. Utah law has a lot of case law that takes years of experience to understand, and many parents who skip hiring one find out about obscure cases with a big impact after the fact. Even in the most amicable situations, you must have legal counsel that’s highly familiar with the twists and turns of divorce law and parental rights.
Real estate can also be tricky. A divorce lawyer in Salt Lake City must have detailed knowledge about precedents and local attitudes to help you avoid a disaster and ensure an equitable division of property.
Both Spouses Fully Agree on Disposition of Limited Debts and Assets
If there aren’t a lot of assets to divide, debts aren’t substantial and you both fully agree with how they should be divided, you might not need an attorney. Make sure you have a complete list of everything possibly involved and do thorough research about divorce law in Utah. If there’s any chance of disagreement, you must have an attorney. Plus, a good divorce lawyer in Salt Lake City should also understand the regional culture and how religious issues may impact a judge’s decision.
If your spouse has hired an attorney, your hand is effectively forced – you’ll need representation or risk having serious, long-term consequences. Also, if there has ever been domestic violence, your attorney may be able to use that to help your position significantly.
Neither Spouse Is in the Military or Has Significant Pension or Retirement Plans
Being active military will complicate a divorce. Regardless of who is serving, you’ll need an attorney to untangle the knots and overlapping laws that may be involved.
The disposition of pensions or retirement investments can be incredibly difficult, especially for long marriages. There’s a lot taken into account by judges trying to find a fair compromise, and a small fact that seems insignificant to you can make a massive difference in the outcome.
If you don’t fall into one of these categories, and have enough time to do serious legal research, you might not need a divorce lawyer in Salt Lake City. However, all experts still recommend getting one, since there can be hidden ramifications in even the simplest divorces.