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Tips for an inexpensive and efficient divorce

Making the decision to get divorce can be a difficult one to make, but once it's made, most people would agree that getting the proceedings started and completed with as few complications as possible is the best possible scenario. While this may not always be possible when a divorce is coupled with contentious issues such as complex property division or child custody, there are several tips which those facing a divorce can use to make things easier on themselves.

Before going into a divorce, it can be beneficial to understand all of the possible costs associated with the proceedings. Beyond the more recognizable costs of lawyer's fees and court costs, other expenses could come from evaluations, real estate expenditures, or even mandated parenting classes. Even mediation, which can be a more cost-effective method of finalizing a divorce, can have costs associated with it.

Which each couples assets vary, which alters just how expensive a divorce may be, some experts estimate the typical cost somewhere between $15,000 and $20,000. The higher the amount of assets under consideration, the higher these costs may get. With these expenses looming over a divorce proceeding, there are some tips which people can follow to help minimize the costs.

The first of these tips actually comes into play during the marriage itself: signing a prenuptial agreement. While it may be too late for some, those who wish to safeguard against financial struggle during a divorce could take this step to ensure the proceedings happen without complications. Another step, as mentioned above, is to choose mediation instead of going to trial. If an agreement can be reached quickly, then the expenditures could be kept lower. Also of significant importance is to consider all of tax and investment consequences of any decisions made. While a deal may look good at the outset, with the addition of taxes and changes in asset value, money can be lost.

Source: Huffington Post, "How Much Does the Average Divorce Really Cost?" Laura Seldon, May 30, 2013

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