How Much Does a Divorce Cost in Texas?
How much a divorce cost typically depends on how many issues are contested in your case and varies from state to state. According to surveys conducted in 2020, the average hourly rates charged by Texas attorneys tend to be higher than national average hourly rates for family law attorneys but lower than states such as California or New York. Moreover, an attorney’s level of experience may also affect his or her hourly rate as more experienced attorneys typically charge more per hour due to specialized experience. However, this does not mean that an attorney who charges higher hourly rates will cost you more in higher total bills because an experienced attorney often resolves problems in family law cases in less time than a less experienced attorney.
Usually, the more disagreement between the parties, the more the divorce will cost. This is because your attorney will have to spend more time on your case if there are numerous contested issues, usually involving family violence, child custody, child support, or property division. In order to resolve these disputes, your family law attorney will need to spend time gathering financial documents and other information through the discovery process and negotiate a settlement agreement. Your attorney may also need to file motions and represent your interests at court hearings, mediation, and final trial.
Based on surveys conducted in 2020, the average total cost of a divorce with no contested issues is approximately $5,000.00. This average cost rises to approximately $7,000 when there is 1 dispute settled through negotiation, and up to $12,000 when there are 2 or more disputes resolved through settlement. When contested issues must be resolved in court, the average costs climbs even higher: $17,000 for trial on 1 contested issue and $23,000 for trial on 2 or more contested issues. Regardless of what you pay to your family law attorney, your family law matter will also involve other non-attorney expenses such as filing fees, mediation costs, appraisal costs, and expert fees.
Most reputable family law attorneys require a retainer to be paid up front before providing legal services. A retainer fee is an advance payment for future services to be rendered, similar to a down payment that will cover the initial expenses of starting the work. The retainer fee is placed in a trust account, and each month, the trust account is deducted based on the work that is being done in the case. Once the retainer fee is depleted, you will be required to replenish in order for work to continue. You should make sure that you understand your financial obligations in full detail under the legal service agreement.
How much a divorce costs varies on a case-by-case basis. Divorce attorneys generally charge fees based on the amount of time spent working on your case and actual costs, such as filing fees. Generally, based on experience, a divorce attorney’s billable rate is the amount of money that he or she charges per hour.
It is important to select a family law attorney who is experienced, tenacious, and a good fit for you and your goals. Call the Liu Law Firm today at (469) 949-9227 to see how we may help.
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