California is one of the most expensive states to live in, especially here in sunny Los Angeles. With notoriously high housing and transportation costs, it may not be a surprise that getting divorced here is not cheap either.
If you are seeking a divorce in the Golden State, one of the biggest concerns you might have is the cost of your separation. Each divorce case is unique, so the bottom line will vary depending on your situation. While there’s no fixed price, our California divorce lawyers at TRABOLSI | LEVY | GABBARD LLP are breaking down the average cost of a divorce and the different factors that affect that amount.
What is the Average Cost of Divorce in California?
The average cost of divorce in California is $17,500. However, that number can go down significantly in uncontested cases or increase depending on any disputed issues. The more complex your divorce case is, the more expensive it will be. It is best to seek an amicable and non-confrontational divorce if possible.
From the beginning, you’ll have to pay around $435 in divorce filing fees, the average cost in California and the highest average of any state. Next, we’d advise you to hire an attorney. This is the best way to ensure that your assets and best interests are protected throughout the divorce process; however, their fees will be a significant portion of the overall costs.
Other expenses to think about include court filings, costs of copying and sharing documents, and compensation for witnesses and consultants, such as financial analysts and appraisers. To determine how much your divorce will cost, it’s best to consult a lawyer who will take into account the special circumstances of your case.
What Affects Divorce Costs in California?
To get a better idea of what your divorce will look like, we're looking into the different factors that affect its cost. As a general rule, disagreements regarding significant issues and matters resolved outside of the courtroom will drive up the amount.
Property Division Issues
No matter where you get divorced, you will need to divide your marital assets. California abides by the community property rule, which means all assets gained during the marriage must be divided equally. For example, if a couple owned $1 million in total assets, the court would strive to divide the community property to $500,000 each. However, divorces are rarely this simple. The divorcing parties may disagree about the value or ownership of a particular asset, prolonging the process.
Divorcing With Children
The sensitive issues of child custody and child support are often the most emotional and difficult aspects of divorce. Parents often get into custody battles or fight over support orders, which can significantly increase costs.
Disputes Regarding Alimony
Discussions over alimony or spousal support can lead to lengthy negotiations. In many alimony disputes, we see spouses disagree with how much the working spouse makes and how much the other spouse should receive in support. Taking these matters to court can skyrocket the cost of divorce, which is why we recommend resolving them outside.
Call Our California Divorce Attorneys Today at (310) 455-8364
Going through a divorce can be one of the most emotionally taxing experiences in life, especially when you think about its associated costs. Our team is here to help you and take the stress out of the process. When your family's future is up in the air, we will be there to find you the best solutions. With more than 100 years of combined experience, you can count on us to resolve your most sensitive and personal legal issues.
Reach out to our California divorce lawyers today at (310) 455-8364 to schedule a consultation today.