A divorce can often leave you without any liquid assets. Regardless of how amicable your divorce is, it can be expensive. If you have children, custody arrangements will need to be made — even if your relationship with your ex-spouse is quite good. So what can you do if you can't afford a divorce?
Arranging a Payment Plan
There are divorce attorneys who will work on payment plans, with the understanding that no one is at their most financially stable when they're going through a divorce. This makes it easy, and after you make a single down payment, you can pay your attorney after the divorce has been settled and you've secured your assets.
Look Into Your Community Services
There are often many domestic community services that will help you with your legal needs. If you need aid and earn below a certain amount (especially if you've been a stay-at-home spouse), this kind of service can help. Usually, you will need to be a low-income individual to qualify for this, but you may also qualify if you've been the victim of domestic abuse.
Attempt to Get the Divorce Fees Waived
To lower the costs more significantly, you can attempt to get your actual divorce fees waived. The cost of a divorce is only partly the cost of the legal aid. There are also fees associated with the divorce paperwork itself, due to how involved the processing is. If you can get these fees waived (usually possible for lower-income households), it may reduce your overall costs.
Consider Credit or a Loan
Taking out a credit card or a personal loan may not be the ideal situation, but often it's the most sensible financial one. If you aren't being properly represented by an attorney, you could lose a lot of money over time. Alimony, child support, and other critical decisions are going to be a part of the family court process.
Lawyers are expensive precisely because they provide value. A good lawyer is almost always going to deliver more value to you than they cost because otherwise, you could end up without the assets and income that you deserve. It's just a matter of getting the funding.
While it is possible to file for a divorce on your own, it's almost never advisable. Filing for a divorce is a lengthy and complex process, and if you aren't legally protected, you could find yourself in a difficult situation moving forward.