A do-it-yourself (DIY) divorce may seem appealing due to the potential cost savings and the desire to handle the process independently. After all, divorces can be financially and emotionally taxing, and the prospect of cutting expenses by handling the process oneself can be enticing.
If you are thinking of walking down this road, carefully considering the potential risks and drawbacks is essential. Divorce is a complex legal process that involves life-changing decisions, and you are better off safe than sorry. Below are some reasons why a DIY divorce is not advisable:
1. You may lack the legal knowledge
Various laws and regulations guide the divorce process, and you may not be conversant with how things work more so from a legal perspective. That’s in addition to the mountain of paperwork involved.
As such, you may not fully understand your legal rights, omit essential documents or fill out forms incorrectly, which could result in an unfair agreement or settlement.
2. Emotional distress and impaired decision making
Divorce is an emotionally charged affair, and it is easy to make rash decisions or ill-informed concessions with a DIY divorce. For instance, you may rush to finalize the divorce and accept a settlement that could negatively affect your financial and parental rights.
3. Incomplete or unenforceable agreements
You may improperly overlook or address crucial issues with a DIY divorce, leading to an unenforceable arrangement or opening you up to future disputes with your ex. The court will not enforce an overly skewed or unfair settlement, and you may have to go back to the drawing board, which defeats your intentions.
4. Unforeseen complications
Divorce cases can become unexpectedly complicated, especially when dealing with shared assets, child custody and spousal support. DIY divorce may not adequately address these and other complexities, leaving you vulnerable to legal disputes and additional expenses down the road.
The risks of a DIY divorce far outweigh the benefits, which explains the importance of seeking legal assistance to ensure you do everything right. The proper guidance can help you navigate the divorce process smoothly while protecting your rights and interests.