Illinois ranks #13 for highest average cost for a divorce
According to the newly released 2018 data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Illinois ranks #13 for highest average cost for a divorce with or without children. The average cost for a divorce without children in Illinois, and thus in DuPage County, is $13,800. The average cost for a divorce with children is $20,700.
What influences the average cost for a DuPage County Divorce?
There are many things that influence the average cost but it often comes down to emotions, complexity of communication skills and estate size, and court time.
Emotions play and important part into whether a person wants to fight in court or compromise and settle out of court. Often anger clouds judgment and fighting in court can feel like an appropriate path. Using court to feel vindicated or to feel a sense of "I won" will only prolong the divorce and increase costs. Attempting to follow the same divorce path as your friend, family member, or co-worker might also increase your costs. It is likely that they followed the traditional method of court litigation. Closing your eyes and ears to alternative dispute resolution processes because "that is not how my best friend" handled divorce, will increase your costs.
Any time the court monitors a divorce, costs will go up due to attorneys fees, court ordered mediation fees, and/or court ordered Guardian ad litem fees.
What can you do to control and lower your divorce related costs?
How can you control or lower your divorce related costs in DuPage County, or any other county in Illinois? Be flexible, be supported, and be prepared. You can do this by focusing on the following:
- A willingness to negotiate fairly and compromise when safe to do so
- Organize calendars for parenting time and financial statements for accurately disclosing income, assets, liabilities
- Team building - Retain a Lawyer, Financial Professional, and Divorce Coach to efficiently address what is emotionally hard to focus on during a divorce
- Scheduling Flexibility and Willingness to follow recommendations of Divorce & Family Law Lawyer
What options are available to protect the client but also control costs?
There are many options for resolving a divorce, some of which are highlighted below. If you are a good candidate for alternative dispute resolution, keep in mind that you should budget for what we at Birt Law call a "closing attorney" which is the attorney that will prepare the court documents necessary for finalizing your divorce. For example, at the DuPage County Divorce Courthouse, you will still have a final hearing where documents are presented to the Judge for review and approval to finalize your divorce. Often, the Closing Attorney services are billed at a flat fee rate and thus a predictable expense to budget.
The options and alternatives, all of which we offer here at Birt Law, to divorce litigation include: