What is the Average Cost of Divorce?
For a DIY divorce, you’ll have to come to an agreement with your spouse on various issues like division of property, alimony and child custody. Make sure both parties are comfortable with the decisions before putting them on paper and filing them with the court.
Though this option is typically the cheapest, it also is very high risk because there is a chance that proper paperwork and procedure is not followed and you would be forced to hire an attorney anyway. It is always best practice to consult an attorney even if you choose to file for the divorce yourself.
Hire an Experienced Divorce Attorney to Keep Costs Under Control in Your Divorce
Hiring an attorney is the most expensive part of a divorce, but an experienced divorce lawyer can save you money in the long run by making sure proper paperwork is ironclad, filed on time, and completed right the first time. Your divorce lawyer will charge you by the hour, and keep tabs on court costs.
If the mediation breaks down, or the spouses can’t come to an agreement between themselves, the divorce will have to be resolved in court. Here it becomes a necessity to have competent legal assistance.
Frequently Asked Questions About Divorce Fees
Divorcing in Utah has court costs associated with an action. You will be required to pay a court filing fee to begin divorce proceedings.
Fees for divorce will include:
1 – Court costs of $310
2 – Online Court Assistance Program (OCAP) fee $20/document,
3 – The Divorce Education course is $35 per person.
4 – The Divorce Orientation course is $30 per person. The fee for the live Divorce Orientation course will be discounted $15 for a petitioner who attends a live class within 30 days of filing the petition, and will be discounted $15 for a respondent who attends a live class within 30 days of being served with the petition.
5 – Service of Process fee will vary depending on the type of documents served and who serves them. Learn more about service fees and who can serve a person documents here.
Utah divorce cost includes a court cost divorce paperwork filing fee of $310 for a divorce without children, and $360 when there are children involved. This will cover the fee for the court to review your divorce and get the process legally started. In certain circumstances, a filing fee may be waived. To have fees waived, you must prove to the court that you are unable to pay them based on your income, property, and debts. For more information, see Fee Waiver.
The average cost of divorce in UT is higher when the divorce process involves children. Lawyer fees will be higher, as custody and visitation negotiations will be involved. In addition to increased lawyer fees, both spouses will be required to pay for and attend a one-hour Divorce Orientation which costs $20 per spouse, and a two-hour-long Divorce Education Class which has a fee of $35 per spouse. You will require proof that you attended both of the classes for your divorce to be filed.
Utah requires divorcing parties to attend at least one session of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR). The parties have to go through mediation before the divorce can continue in court. Mediation fees are paid directly to the mediator to help you reach a resolution out of court. The mediator will be an impartial party to the divorce, helping both parties reach an amicable agreement. Each professional mediation provider can set their own rate, but hourly rates run between $50 and $300 per hour; oftentimes those with a stronger background or more experience will charge higher rates. Sessions depend on the circumstances of the divorce and the willingness of each spouse to compromise. Typically, mediation will run a minimum of two hours and up to six hours on average, which will vary depending on the complexity. In most cases, the spouses will split the mediation fee. The mediation will also incur attorney fees if you choose to have your attorney present, which is highly recommended for all proceedings as mediators aren’t there to advocate for you, but rather to get an agreement in place.
You will have increased attorney fees for child custody cases that typically will involve additional hourly rates for the time spent to work towards achieving custody, a visitation schedule, and child support payments. You will also be required to pay the $55 for both of the required parenting divorce classes as well as the higher cost for the court filing fee.
The Law Office of David Pedrazas, PLLC., can provide you with a caring and efficient legal service to help you through a difficult divorce. Fill out our form to the right to learn more about the cost of divorce in Utah from our Salt Lake City Divorce and Family Law Attorney.