In your divorce, you have the option to represent yourself in court or hire an attorney to help you. You might want to represent yourself if you believe you are a talented negotiator or feel tempted to save money by not paying attorney’s fees.
However, making this choice is a huge risk. By working with a lawyer, you can avoid causing irreparable damage to your case and have help navigating the complicated legal system.
1. Your emotions may affect your arguments
The dynamics of your divorce might affect your thinking during court hearings, especially since you will be in the presence of your ex and his or her attorney. You run the risk of becoming emotional or defensive under pressure and you will not have an attorney there to step in on your behalf to make solid legal arguments.
2. You need to follow the strict court rules
After you get the divorce petition, you have a short period of time to file a response with the court. Not only do lawsuits have strict timing requirements for filing pleadings, but the judge will hold you to the same standards as a lawyer in his or her courtroom.
3. Reaching a fair settlement is difficult
At the time you sign your divorce settlement, it may seem that the terms you are agreeing to are fair. However, later when you are out of the stressful courtroom environment, you might realize that you signed off on something that you did not actually want. It is up to you to have spotted any potential issues and advocate for yourself.
Overall, even if you do not technically need an attorney to represent you, hiring a family law firm to represent you in your divorce may ensure that you, your property and your rights remain intact.