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Can I Make My Spouse Pay for the Divorce?

Understandably, going through divorce is stressful enough as it is, but adding all of the fees and other logistics on top of that can make the entire ordeal that can be overwhelming. First, you have to think about what life will be like adjusting to living with only one income and how your properties, assets, and even debts will be divided up.

If you share children with your spouse, your attorney will need to work out the fees and other procedures regarding child support, child custody, etc., which will eventually add up in the overall cost of legal fees.

However, there is some form of relief. Did you know that you can request to have the expense of your attorney fees awarded to you from your divorce settlement? This is often done when one spouse does not have the financial capability to cover their legal fees.

Understandsing Florida Law

In a way, it allows both parties the ability to litigate on an even playing field. Let’s say, for example, that one spouse was the higher earner during the marriage. They may have the ability to hire a topnotch Miami divorce attorney. On the other hand, the spouse who has less financial wiggle room may not have the opportunity to employ reliable legal counsel.

There is one caveat to this, however. One cannot be awarded attorney’s fees for those who have been found as an offender in domestic violence cases, have refused to pay child support, or have not followed through with their visitation privileges. In other words, if one spouse has been found in the wrong for any reason, they may not be eligible to collect attorney fees.

What are the requirements?

At the beginning of your divorce proceedings, be sure to let the courts know that you are making the motion to request the fees. It is a simple petition form that you must fill out. Be sure you file this at the onset, however, as you cannot request the fees at a later point in time.

In order to determine if the spouse should be awarded the fees, the courts will review the following:

  • Both spouses individual financial resources and backgrounds
  • How much the petitioning spouse is in need of financial support
  • The history of the divorce proceeding
  • Conduct of spouses during the court proceedings
  • How reasonable the attorney’s fees are

As you can see, many factors play a role in the court’s ultimate decision. Yet it is worthwhile to note that you can and do have a chance at requesting the fees to cover the costs of legal expenses. You can also feel free to ask our Miami divorce lawyers about your case to see if we can help you.

We offer 100% free, no-obligation case consultations, along with compassionate, caring support. Feel free to contact us at any time for legal counsel.

Categories: Divorce