Can I Respond To Divorce Without An Attorney? Should I?

On April 22, 2024

Your Divorce Is No Time To Try Your Hand at Playing Lawyer

There is no law that prevents you from handling your Southern Colorado divorce without an attorney. No law requires you to hire a trained mechanic to fix your car or retain an experienced architect to design your house.

Legally, you could attempt to remove your own burst appendix instead of having a surgeon do so. However, that doesn’t mean that any of these are good ideas.

Taking a “DIY” approach could lead to disastrous consequences and cost you far more than the fees you would pay any of these professionals to do the job for you.

These tasks require specialized education, experience, and training that every Joe off the street may not have. Divorce is far more complex than deciding who gets what and who gets to see the kids when.

Even if you and your spouse agree on fundamental issues like custody, child support, and property division, you must remember one thing. You don’t know what you don’t know.

You may not know your rights as a spouse or a parent or what Colorado law says about the amounts in spousal maintenance or child support you are entitled to. You may not comprehend the myriad ways your soon-to-be ex can game the system, hide assets, or otherwise hurt you and your child.

If you try to represent yourself and navigate your divorce without an attorney, you could find yourself steamrolled by your spouse and their lawyer. You will receive arrangements that are significantly worse than they would be if you had an experienced divorce lawyer guiding you through the process.

Responding to a divorce without an attorney can be one of the most costly mistakes you’ll ever make. From child and spousal support disputes to the proper division of assets, you need a Colorado Springs divorce attorney.

Before you decide to respond to divorce without an attorney, consider these three things.

Divorce Without an Attorney Is Complicated

Even for talented attorneys who may be experts in other areas of the law, the specific laws, rules, and procedures that govern Colorado divorces can be unfamiliar, confusing, or overwhelming. Lengthy factors, calculations, and formulas apply to financial arrangements, asset valuation and distribution, and other matters that will impact your and your child’s lives for years to come.

If you show up to an El Paso County courtroom without understanding all of these factors, don’t expect a judge to be easy on you just because you don’t have a lawyer. The judge will expect you to know how the process works, what you can and cannot do, and the law.

Meanwhile, your spouse will be happy to let their experienced lawyer handle things while you struggle to keep up or fight back. Why would you risk putting yourself at such a disadvantage?

You are expected to represent yourself calmly and professionally, which can be tricky during a divorce. Don’t let flaring emotions cloud your judgment, and don’t attempt to divorce without an attorney.

Take these stakes into careful consideration. The difference between an amicable divorce and a contentious one can be as simple as not hiring an experienced Colorado Springs divorce attorney.

See Also: How to Minimize Acrimony in Divorce

Perkins - Divorce Without an Attorney

Friendliness and Fairness Don’t Mean the Same Thing

While divorce is always difficult, it isn’t always nasty. Some couples can handle matters civilly and amicably, reaching agreements about significant issues. Under such circumstances, it is understandable to question why attorneys are even needed.

When you try to divorce without an attorney, it comes back to not knowing what you don’t know:

  • Are you sure you have addressed every issue?
  • Do you understand the impact of your proposed agreement?
  • Do you know all of your options or what the law says?

Something that may seem fair to you in the abstract may become glaringly unfair once you know what the law provides on a given matter.

Remember, no matter how friendly your spouse and their lawyer may be, the lawyer represents your spouse, not you, and is duty-bound to protect and advance their client’s interests, not yours.

By having a Colorado Springs divorce lawyer on your side, they will ensure that the final settlement agreement is equitable and follows the letter of the law.

Read More: Why You Should Prioritize Asset Protection in Divorce

Don’t Let Money Be The Reason You Go Through ADivorce Without an Attorney

In many divorce cases in Colorado Springs, the spouses have dramatically different access to the financial resources needed to pay for an experienced divorce lawyer. One spouse may have all or most of the couple’s income and assets and can pay for the divorce attorney of their choice, while the other spouse lacks the means to pay an attorney anything.

Colorado law recognizes the unfairness and frequency of this situation. That’s why a spouse who can’t afford an attorney can ask the divorce judge to order the other spouse to contribute to the costs of an attorney. As such, you should not let a fear of attorney’s fees deter you from hiring a divorce lawyer.

Don’t Make a Costly Mistake; Call the Divorce Attorneys at Perkins Law Now

Responding to a petition for divorce without an attorney can be the biggest misstep you’ll ever make. Before you consider taking this action, contact the Colorado Springs divorce attorneys at Pekins Law. With their help, you will find a way forward and no longer have to navigate the choppy waters of divorce on your own.

Contact the experienced team of divorce lawyers at Perkins Law today to schedule your 100% free, no-obligation consultation.

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