Page 59 - 2011 Guide to Family Violence Laws

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54
about $75 in marshal's fees to have
court papers served on your spouse.
In addition, if you and your spouse
have children you will also have to
take a class called “Parent
Education.” The fee for this class is
$125. This will probably be your
total expense for a
pro se
divorce.
Private attorneys charge hourly fees
that range from approximately
$150/hour
to more
than
$400/hour. The minimum fee for a
very simple divorce is probably
about $2,000, and the fee for a
divorce involving a few issues can be
about $5,000. When a divorce is
more complicated because of abuse,
child custody or support issues, the
lawyer's fees might be higher.
I lived with my partner but we
were never married. Can the
police or courts still help me?
If you are in danger, you can call the
police for help. If your partner is
arrested, you may request a
protective order from the criminal
court. You can also apply for a
restraining order from the civil
court.
You may also file child custody or
child support actions in court.
However, it may be more difficult to
work out disputes about your home,
furniture, property, debts and other
financial matters. If you were never
married, you are considered two
separate individuals under the law:
you each own whatever is in your
own name, and owe whatever debts
are in your name as well. In some
cases this may not seem fair -for
example, the car may be in his
name, but you may have been
paying for it together or with money
that you earned. If you have
disputes like this, you should
consult a lawyer.