Expertise.com

Best Divorce Lawyers in Torrance

Laurels
Laurels

We did the research for you!

Learn more
  • checkboxLicensing
  • checkboxUser Reviews
  • checkboxMystery Shopping Calls

Divorce Lawyers FAQs

Learn more
CalDisso logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

CalDisso

3828 W. Carson Street, #100, Torrance, CA 90503
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Mediation
  • Uncontested
  • Divorce

Business Description

Serving the Torrance metro, CalDisso is a law firm that offers legal assistance to couples before and after a divorce. With over five decades of collective experience, its attorneys are knowledgeable in various areas of divorce, including annulment, legal separation, uncontested divorce, and simplified dissolution. The firm also handles divorce-related issues, such as child custody, visitation rights, and alimony, as well as paternity and domestic partnership cases. Philip Michael Daigneault, one of the attorneys, serves as a member of the Los Angeles County Bar Association's Bench and Bar Committee.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.8
Avvo
5.0 / 5 (6)
Google
4.5 / 5 (4)
Yelp
5.0 / 5 (2)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Inoue Law APC logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Inoue Law APC

3828 West Carson Street, Suite 100, Torrance, CA 90503
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Alimony
  • Child Support
  • Child Custody

Business Description

Inoue Law APC is a private family law practice in Torrance. The firm provides mediation and litigation services for clients going through a divorce. It assists with related matters such as the division of marital assets, custody and visitation, child support, and spousal support. The firm also handles post-divorce modifications of orders, domestic violence orders, and premarital agreements. Principal attorney Jan T. Inoue is a Certified Family Law Specialist. She has been practicing law for over two decades.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0
Google
5.0 / 5 (1)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
4.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
––
Law Office of Imelda Valdivia logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Law Office of Imelda Valdivia

707 Torrance Blvd, Suite 220, Redondo Beach, CA 90277
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Child Support
  • Child Custody

Business Description

The Law Office of Imelda Valdivia deals with clients across Torrance. The firm works on family law cases and counsels individuals undergoing divorce. It employs a compassionate approach to help them formulate short-term and long-term strategies for concerns like child custody. The firm also takes on estate planning projects and prepares a wide range of documents, from pour-over wills to durable powers of attorney. Its principal attorney, Imelda Valdivia, is a member of the chambers of commerce in Torrance and Manhattan Beach.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.0
Yelp
4.0 / 5 (7)
Law Office of Kelley C. Finan logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Law Office of Kelley C. Finan

3828 W. Carson Street, Suite 102, Torrance, CA 90503
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Child Support

Business Description

The Law Office of Kelley C. Finan provides services to individuals and families in the Torrance metro and nearby areas. It represents and guides clients who are going through the dissolution of marriage and assists them with resolving related matters. These include child custody and visitation, prenuptial and postnuptial agreements, restraining orders, and spousal maintenance. Kelley C. Finan, the founding attorney, has been practicing law since 2002. She is a member of the Los Angeles County Bar Association.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0
Google
5.0 / 5 (2)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Law Office of Stephen A. Varga logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Law Office of Stephen A. Varga

916 Silver Spur Road, Rolling Hills Estates, CA 90274
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Business Description

The Law Office of Stephen A. Varga is a general litigation law firm. Founder Stephen Varga, a divorce lawyer near Torrance, has been practicing law since 1980, and he offers legal counsel and representation to individuals and couples who are in the midst of a divorce. He has additional experience mediating between unmarried parents that separated with children. Varga also defends clients from allegations of various crimes, such as theft, drug use, and drunk driving.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.9

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Law Office of Stuart E. Bruers logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Law Office of Stuart E. Bruers

2367 Torrance Boulevard, Torrance, CA 90501
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Business Description

The Law Office of Stuart E. Bruers is a civil litigation law firm. The firm's founder, a divorce attorney in Torrance, has over 20 years of experience in the field. His team has experience with divorce cases involving children and high net worth individuals. It offers mediation and litigation services to resolve matters related to the divorce, such as child care and alimony. Additional practice areas include personal injury, bankruptcy, and criminal law.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.8
Google
4.7 / 5 (7)
Facebook
4.7 / 5 (6)
Yelp
4.5 / 5 (6)

(+1 additional source)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Law Offices of Edgar Coronado logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Law Offices of Edgar Coronado

3620 Pacific Coast Highway, Suite 200, Torrance, CA 90505
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Child Support
  • Child Custody
  • Alimony

Business Description

The Law Offices of Edgar Coronado advocates for the rights of people in and around the Torrance metro. It guides and represents individuals going through the process of divorce and helps them with addressing asset and debt division, child custody, and grandparent visitation matters. The firm also submits petitions to establish paternity and requests domestic violence restraining orders. In addition to taking on divorce cases, it resolves disputes between real estate buyers and brokers. Edgar I. Coronado, the attorney, has been practicing law since 1995.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0
Google
5.0 / 5 (9)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Law Offices of Laura L. Westray logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Law Offices of Laura L. Westray

1617 Pacific Coast Highway, Suite A, Redondo Beach, CA 90277
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Contested
  • Uncontested

Business Description

The Law Offices of Laura L. Westray responds to clients in Torrance who have issues concerning divorce proceedings. The firm handles contested and uncontested marital dissolutions. It irons out matters surrounding spousal support obligations and property division. The office also resorts to mediation processes as an alternative and less confrontational remedy. Laura Westray founded her private practice in 1995. She served as chair of the Santa Monica Bar Association Family Law Section and is a licensed real estate broker.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.4
Google
4.4 / 5 (7)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Macksoud Macksoud & Davis, LLP logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Macksoud Macksoud & Davis, LLP

3620 Pacific Coast Highway Suite 100, Torrance, CA 90505
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Child Support
  • Child Custody

Business Description

Macksoud Macksoud & Davis, LLP, offers the legal assistance clients require in Torrance when going through or considering divorce. It handles complex divorce cases and family law matters involving property division, child custody and visitation, grandparents' rights, child support and modifications, and spousal support. In addition, it safeguards the interests of individuals seeking a legal separation. Alexander E. Macksoud, the firm's founder, received a certification from the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization as a specialist in family law.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.4
Yelp
4.5 / 5 (28)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Marmolejo Law, APC logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Marmolejo Law, APC

4640 Admiralty Way, Marina del Rey, CA 90292
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Business Description

Marmolejo Law APC is a family law firm representing the people of Torrance and the nearby communities. The firm primarily focuses on using mediation to help divorcing spouses come to amicable agreements on matters stemming from the divorce, such as alimony, custody, and property distribution. Its team is also available to litigate on the client's behalf if an agreement can't be reached. Additionally, the firm offers postnuptial contract review and modification services.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0
Yelp
4.5 / 5 (39)
Facebook
5.0 / 5 (3)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
4.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
––
McGaughey & Spirito logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

McGaughey & Spirito

116 Avenue I, Redondo Beach, CA 90277
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Contested
  • Uncontested

Business Description

McGaughey & Spirito has been providing legal solutions to individuals and families in Torrance and the surrounding areas since 1990. It offers mediation and collaborative law services for divorce proceedings. Its team litigates high-asset or high-conflict divorces involving complex financial and property division, support payments, and custody issues. The firm has a Certified Family Law Specialist on staff. Partner Joseph P. Spirito Jr. has served as chair of the Los Angeles County Bar Association, Family Law Section.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.9
Google
4.8 / 5 (6)
Facebook
5.0 / 5 (6)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
McPherson & Marquez Attorneys at Law logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

McPherson & Marquez Attorneys at Law

21515 Hawthorne Blvd. Suite 980, Torrance, CA 90503
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Child Support
  • Child Custody

Business Description

McPherson & Marquez Attorneys at Law provides legal counsel and representation in various aspects of family law to clients in Torrance and the surrounding communities. Its attorneys, who have more than 50 years of combined legal experience, help couples who need preliminary legal advice in their divorce case or representation in a recent divorce filing or post-judgment issues. They also handle related cases such as property division, child custody, child support, spousal support, and temporary restraining orders.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.5
Yelp
5.0 / 5 (8)
Avvo
4.0 / 5 (4)
Google
3.7 / 5 (3)

(+1 additional source)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Merissa V. Grayson, Esq. logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Merissa V. Grayson, Esq.

21151 S. Western Ave, Torrance, CA 90501
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Child Support
  • Child Custody

Business Description

Merissa V. Grayson, Esq., is a family lawyer that offers services in Torrance. She handles divorce and addresses family law-related issues, including child custody, visitation, support, co-parenting, pre-marital agreements, and domestic violence. She also takes on cases in other jurisdictions. In addition, she acts as a mediator for couples who prefer to discuss issues and suggest solutions amicably. Grayson works to provide personalized service by limiting the number of cases that she tackles and encouraging direct communication with her clients.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0
Facebook
5.0 / 5 (10)
Google
5.0 / 5 (8)
Yelp
5.0 / 5 (4)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Mioni Family Law logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Mioni Family Law

1815 Via El Prado, Suite 203, Redondo Beach, CA 90277
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Child Custody

Business Description

Located in Redondo Beach, Mioni Family Law is a practice that serves clients in Torrance and the surrounding communities. It represents clients in divorce cases, which may involve child custody and support, asset and debt division, spousal support, and paternity actions. The firm handles other family law issues, such as prenuptial and postnuptial agreements, adoptions, domestic violence, and same-sex relationships. Managing partner Lovette T. Mioni holds the Certified Family Law Specialist designation from the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0
Google
5.0 / 5 (26)
Facebook
5.0 / 5 (7)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Nowzaree Law logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Nowzaree Law

21515 Hawthorne Boulevard, Torrance, CA 90503
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Business Description

Nowzaree Law is a family law firm offering its services to the community of Torrance. The firm has an additional office in Orange County, and its legal team has experience with civil cases involving divorce and its subsequent issues, such as child custody and visitation, spousal and child support, and distribution of joint property and debts. Additionally, the team has experience with family law cases involving prenuptial agreements and paternity actions.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0
Yelp
5.0 / 5 (43)
Facebook
5.0 / 5 (6)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Okwuosa Pulliam Law Group logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Okwuosa Pulliam Law Group

21515 Hawthorne Blvd Suite 200, Torrance, CA 90503
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Child Support
  • Child Custody

Business Description

Okwuosa Pulliam Law Group represents individuals in the Torrance area, who are undergoing a contested or an uncontested divorce. The firm develops legal solutions to protect clients' rights during the process and negotiates on their behalf. Its team educates clients on matters concerning business assets, marital home contributions, and child custody. In addition, the professionals help fathers establish their rights. The law office is owned by Maureen Okwuosa-Pulliam, who has been in practice since 2008.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0
Google
5.0 / 5 (10)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Olsen & Olsen Attorneys At Law logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Olsen & Olsen Attorneys At Law

2367 Torrance Blvd, Torrance, CA 90501
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Divorce

Business Description

Olsen & Olsen Attorneys at Law has served residents in and around Torrance through rough times for more than 55 years. Managing Partner Casey A. Olsen is a certified family law specialist with over 30 years of experience. He helps married couples deal with the complexities of divorce, custody and support, and domestic violence. His services also include elder abuse and civil harassment cases. Olsen well understands the social dynamics in the area and cares about obtaining fair resolutions for his clients.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.8
Yelp
5.0 / 5 (26)
Google
4.6 / 5 (17)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Parmar Law logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Parmar Law

2461 W. 205th Street #B204A, Torrance, CA 90501
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Child Support
  • Child Custody

Business Description

Parmar Law represents Torrance residents in several practice areas. The law firm protects the legal rights and interests of individuals going through a divorce against opposing parties who use the court process for financial gain. It also helps clients resolve various family law matters, including child custody, domestic violence, and child abuse. Criminal defense and business law services are additionally available. Founding attorney Ravi Parmar and the legal team strive to aggressively represent clients and advocate for their welfare in and out of the courtroom.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0
Avvo
5.0 / 5 (21)
Yelp
5.0 / 5 (12)
Google
5.0 / 5 (2)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Rombro & Manley LLP logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Rombro & Manley LLP

3405 North Sepulveda Boulevard, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Business Description

Rombro & Manley LLP is a team of family lawyers near Torrance. The firm has experience with no fault divorce cases, including those involving large amounts of conflict and high net worth individuals. Its team uses alternative dispute resolution methods to help the two parties come to agreements regarding issues caused by the divorce. It also offers modification and enforcement services for existing contracts. Partner Melinda Manley has been board-certified in the area of family law.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
3.8
Google
4.9 / 5 (66)
Yelp
3.5 / 5 (9)
Avvo
5.0 / 5 (8)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Tara McGuinness & Associates logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Tara McGuinness & Associates

3424 West Carson Street, Torrance, CA 90503
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Business Description

Tara McGuinness & Associates is a civil litigation law firm operating out of Torrance. Board-certified in the field of family law, founder Tara McGuinness has been practicing law since 1981. She offers mediation and litigation services to clients who are going through a divorce in order to make decisions regarding parenting plans, spousal maintenance, and division of marital assets and debts. McGuinness has additional experience in the field of estate planning.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.2
Avvo
5.0 / 5 (13)
Yelp
3.0 / 5 (9)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
The Law Offices of Sharma Kliche, LLP logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

The Law Offices of Sharma Kliche, LLP

879 W 190th St Ste 400, Torrance, CA 90248
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Business Description

The Law Offices of Sharma Kliche LLP serves clients with family law cases involving divorce, child custody, child support, and same-sex law. They help clients with issues regarding child custody and support, alimony, and distribution of marital property. Other legal areas they cover include asset protection, civil litigation, estate planning, immigration, pet trusts, and special needs trusts. The managing partners, Maneesh Sharma and Diana Kliche, together with their team, have years of combined legal experience.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.9
Yelp
5.0 / 5 (19)
Avvo
5.0 / 5 (8)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Back to Providers

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the basic steps to filing for divorce?

The steps required to file for divorce depend heavily on whether the divorce is contested, if there are minor children or property issues at stake, and if there are disagreements over child support or alimony. The process may also differ from state to state, but generally parties must:

  • File the divorce petition
  • Hire a process server to give the other party divorce papers/respond to the original petitioner's filing
  • Request temporary orders covering issues such as custody/visitation, support, and exclusive property use
  • Make financial disclosures
  • Request discovery from your spouse
  • Propose and/or consider a possible settlement
  • Go to trial if necessary
  • Receive a signed judgment from the court indicating the divorce is final
  • Address post-divorce tasks such as transferring property titles and closing joint bank accounts

How much does it cost to get a divorce?

The cost of a divorce differs dramatically based on a litany of criteria, such as whether the divorce is contested, where the divorce petition is filed, and whether the divorce requires a professional intermediary or other legal expert. A simple, low-frills DIY divorce can be as little as a few hundred dollars. Add in mediation and the cost may jump to the mid-four figures and can easily reach $7,000 or more. Hire a lawyer and you may pay anywhere from $10,000 to $100,000+ if there are major custodial issue or complex financial concerns.

How much does a divorce lawyer cost?

Most divorce lawyers charge by the hour and billing can vary dramatically. Some attorneys in more affordable markets and/or with less experience may charge as little as $75/hour. More experienced attorney or those who have large staffs, specialize in complex cases, or hold relevant certifications may charge premium rates in excess of $400/hour. Then there are the amount of hours invested; simple cases may be over in a matter of weeks while hotly contested divorces can drag on for years leading to lawyer's fees in the tens of thousands.

How to choose a divorce lawyer/what to look for?

Divorce lawyers are not one-size-fits-all. It's important to find a lawyer whose skill set, experience, and resources align with the demands of each specific situation. For instance, some attorneys will push mediation while others are naturals in the courtroom.

  • Know your budget
  • Limit your search to lawyers experienced in family law
  • Zero in on lawyers or firms that can handle the complexities of divorce, especially any issues that may be specific to the current case
  • Read reviews and ask friends for recommendations, but remember that their situations and needs may not be the same
  • Conduct interviews to see who feels trustworthy and can spell out an approach that feels appropriate
  • Try to ignore ad campaigns and office décor and instead consider track record and skills

What is an uncontested divorce?

An uncontested divorce is one in which both parties agree on the major issues, such as custody of any minor children, child support, alimony, and how to divide any assets and/or debt. While uncontested divorces still require a judge to approve the terms of the divorcing couple's signed agreement, these relatively simple splits tend to move faster, cost less money, and are easier to execute without the help of a divorce lawyer. A divorce filing that goes unanswered by the non-petitioning party may also be considered uncontested.

Can you file for divorce without a lawyer?

It's possible to file for divorce without a lawyer, especially if the divorce is uncontested. Many states offer free divorce forms either online or at legal self-help centers located in or near family court. There are often dispute resolution resources available as well; mediation services can help iron out disputes over custody or financial support without involving lawyers. Still, a free consultation with a divorce lawyer can offer valuable insight, and contentious divorces, whether they go to trial or not, all but require legal representation.

How long does it take to get a divorce?

The length of a divorce is contingent on four things: each state's mandatory waiting period, whether the divorce is uncontested or contested, how quickly both sides can come to an agreement, and how quickly a judge is able to hear or review the case and sign off. The best-case scenario is an uncontested divorce in a state with a short waiting period which could see a divorce finalized in a matter of weeks. For divorces with highly combative parties, long discovery periods, and other complications, a decision could take months or even years.

How to prepare for divorce?

It's difficult to ever feel truly prepared for the rigors of divorce, but there are several steps that can make the process more bearable and allow for a more positive outcome:

  • Interview attorneys
  • Locate and make copies of important documents like mortgage and car titles, insurance policies, business licenses, financial records, bank statements, and income tax returns
  • Take inventory of valuable household items that should be considered later while splitting assets
  • Make a detailed list of monthly expenses, including utilities, rent or mortgage, childcare, kids' activities like sports or dance classes, school tuition, and insurance
  • Know what the respondent's income is, including any income from self-employment, stock dividends, and interest
  • Double-check credit history and evaluate both short- and long-term earning potential
  • Set goals for ideal custody arrangement, support amounts, and living arrangements
  • Get support from friends and family

What to do with an engagement ring after divorce?

Most courts follow state laws that consider an engagement ring to be the recipient's property once a wedding takes place, which means it remains that recipient's individual property even after a divorce. Other states categorize engagement rings as marital property and as such the ring is subject to the same division of assets as a house or art collection might be. For spouses who get to keep their jewelry, engagement rings can be sold, dismantled and repurposed, returned to the original buyer, or kept and handed down to any children the marriage may have produced.

What is divorce mediation?

When divorces get heated or even just have the potential to become messy, a neutral third party can help calm both parties and resolve issues without the need for a trial. This is called mediation. A great mediator is unbiased and invested in a balanced, fair outcome; they will ideally listen to both parties, encourage respectful discussions, and raise questions or concerns when appropriate. Once an agreement is reached, the mediator will prepare documents detailing the agreed-upon terms. Using a mediator only works if both sides are willing to meet and discuss a compromise, but doing so can save a considerable amount of time, money, emotional strain, and overall stress.

Read all FAQs