Counsel Fees, Costs and Expenses FAQ
Note: The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation.
Divorce can be a very expensive process. The law recognizes this and makes provision for the financially dependent spouse to obtain assistance in the payment of counsel fees and costs from the other spouse.
From representation in divorce matters with related economic claims to difficult child custody or support disputes, I offer legal advice directed to your specific situation and needs. Contact my office online or call 866-942-0074 to schedule a complimentary 30 minute consultation to discuss your concerns today. My office, located near the Allegheny Valley exit of the Pennsylvania Turnpike and the Harmarville exit of the Route 28 Expressway, provides a convenient environment in which to discuss your family law needs.
I don’t work, or I am able to work but at a low pay job. My spouse has a good job. Can my spouse be made to pay my attorney fees?
Yes. A financially dependent spouse can obtain an order against the other for the payment of counsel fees. You should remember, however, that it is your obligation to pay your attorney and that the Court ordered contributions from the other spouse are generally not for the full amount of fees incurred by you. Often, as a result of equitable distribution and alimony orders, the parties may each be required to pay their own counsel fees.
How much will it cost me in attorneys fees to get my divorce?
This is not a question that can realistically be answered in advance. Your attorney cannot anticipate how difficult it will be to obtain information concerning assets and liabilities concerning your case, how difficult the other side will be in negotiations or how litigious they may be. A great deal of the total fee will be determined by how cooperative the parties are and how reasonable their expectations as to a final outcome may be.
Your attorney will certainly be able to quote you his/her hourly rate for professional services and the amount that may be required in advance as a retainer. In certain cases, you may also be able to work with your counsel to set certain budgetary goals for items such as pleadings, negotiations or litigation which you and your counsel can regularly review and revise, if necessary.
What are examples of costs and expenses that I may incur in my divorce besides attorneys fees?
Examples of typical costs are:
• Appraiser’s fees (personal property, real estate, businesses, pensions);
• CPA or tax attorney fees;
• Expert witness fees;
• Deposition fees and court stenographer fees;
• Costs for reproduction of records;
• Charges for subpoena service; and
• Filing fees;
Can I get assistance with regard to the payment of costs and expenses from my spouse?
Yes. If you are the financially dependent spouse, you can obtain an order compelling your spouse to contribute to these expenses incurred by you. Depending upon the equitable distribution of assets and any alimony awards, you may be compelled to be solely responsible for such expenses incurred by you.
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Through negotiation or litigation, I can assist you in addressing important family law issues, including:
- Division of marital assets and liabilities (equitable distribution)
- Child custody or support disputes
- Alimony or spousal support
- Enforcement of past decrees and agreements
- Prenuptial agreements
- Grandparents’ rights (visitation and custody)
Contact my office to schedule your complimentary 30 minute consultation during which you will learn how I can help you now.