The process of divorce is not only stressful to both spouses but it is also very expensive. You may have heard about the milliion-dollar divorce cases among celebrities and although the cost of divorce for an ordinary couple may not be in the millions, it can still be out of reach.
So how costly can divorce be and who pays for the expenses? How do couples divide their finances? What about credit accounts and credit scores?
A national study noted that the yearly cost of divorce in the U.S. alone stands at $112 billion.
Expenses related to divorce include legal fees, alimony and child support among many others. In the alimony aspect, research found that former spouses pay more than $10 billion each year. Other expenses can include child support which is estimated at $430 per month, tuition for private school at $8,549 on the average, rent for a house which is at $1,083 per month on the average as well as telephone, internet and cable TV at an average of $160 per month. Add to these are the legal fees for your lawyer and the court which covers the processing fees.
There are several important things to take into consideration when it comes to your finances.
When it comes to credit scores, they are separate. However, when you have joint credit accounts such as a credit card or a loan bearing both your names, your credit score can be affected by divorce.
In the case of shared debts, they also need to be settled during the divorce to avoid any issues later on.
Between the spouses, unfortunately it’s the wives who often lose in the financial aspect. Research has shown that one in five women experience poverty after divorce, about one in three women who own a home lose their abodes after divorce and three in four divorced mothers fail to receive full payment of child support.
A recent article on the Upshot blog of New York Times revealed that divorce rates are going down which means the statement that 50 percent of marriages in the U.S. end in divorce no longer holds true. The post added that the rate is also lower for couples who got married in the 2000s compared to those who tied the knot in the 1970s and 1980s.
In California, the divorce rate is eight per year based on data provided by the American Bar Association, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and 2011 Census Bureau. The filing fee alone costs $395 and the processing time can take up to a year. Florida has the highest filing fee at $409 followed by California while Mississippi has the lowest at $52.
If you live in this state and are contemplating filing a divorce, consulting first with a San Diego divorce lawyer is the right step to take. This will help you get the best information on the process and its cost. From there, you can plan things according to your budget.