handing over money

Odds are that you are already expecting your divorce to be a big expense for you. But you may be wondering just how big of an expense it is going to be. Read on to discover how much an uncontested divorce and a contested divorce will cost and how one of the seasoned Manhattan divorce attorneys at Zimmet Law Group, P.C., can help you in calculating this.

How much does an uncontested divorce cost?

First of all, an uncontested divorce is when you and your spouse use an alternative divorce method to litigation (i.e., arbitration, collaboration, or mediation) to negotiate your divorce-related settlement agreements (i.e., alimony, child support, child custody, and property distribution).

One benefit to an uncontested divorce is that it tends to be a more efficient process. But the biggest benefit is that it tends to be relatively inexpensive compared to a contested divorce. More specifically, the cost of an uncontested divorce in New York State can be as little as $5,500.

How much does a contested divorce cost?

On the other hand, a contested divorce is when you and your spouse cannot amicably reach a settlement agreement on your own, and thus need a court to make a judgment on your behalf in litigation proceedings.

As alluded to above, a contested divorce can get quite costly. More specifically, the cost of a contested divorce in New York State can be as much as $17,000. This is because these divorce proceedings tend to be more drawn out. With that, court fees and attorney fees, among other expenses, can quickly add up.

How can I protect my money in my divorce?

As you can likely conclude, it is recommended that you and your spouse undergo an uncontested divorce if your situation allows for it. However, if you must enter a contested divorce, you can rest assured knowing that there are other methods for protecting your money. For one, you can take inventory of all your assets that are considered your separate property. This is so they do not go up for grabs during the court’s equitable distribution practices.

More ways in which you can protect money in your contested divorce are as follows:

  • You may freeze or close your and your spouse’s joint bank account.
  • You may record the value of your retirement accounts to ensure you receive a fair and just amount from the court’s equitable distribution.
  • You may hire a forensic accountant to ensure that your spouse is not hiding any money or assets from the court’s equitable distribution.

For assistance with reducing the cost of your divorce and overall with protecting your money, you must consult with one of the competent New York City divorce attorneys today.