The costs associated with a divorce include a few separate fees. These are the lawyer fees, the court costs, the filing fees, and any other expenses. Other expenses could be things like transportation costs to and from court hearings and hiring outside experts. Most of the money that you will spend on a divorce is for the lawyer fees.
Cheaper isn’t always better, and while it can be tempting to DIY a divorce to save money, it can cost you much more than money in the long run. Our lawyers can help you understand all of your options and rights when it comes to divorce and make sure that your interests are protected throughout the entire process.
How Much Does a Divorce Lawyer Cost?
According to the Canadian Legal Fees Survey published in Canadian Lawyer Magazine, the average fees for a family lawyer in Ontario range from a little over $1,000 to almost $30,000. The least expensive option on average is an uncontested divorce, which costs around $1,200 in Ontario. The most expensive option is a divorce that includes a trial up to 5 days in length at $28,350. Divorce lawyer costs in Ontario are generally on par with average national costs.
What Can I Do to Make a Divorce Cheaper?
The general rule for divorce costs is the longer the divorce takes, the more you can expect to pay in lawyer fees. This is because most lawyers charge by the hour, and a divorce that takes longer than normal also usually includes more hearings, more time spent interviewing witnesses, and more time spent gathering evidence. If you and your ex can agree on the major points of the divorce, it is likely to be less expensive because it turns what can be a long back-and-forth process into just asking a judge to sign off on the agreement and make it final.
What Happens If I Don’t Have the Money for a Divorce?
If you don’t have the money for a divorce, there may be some options. Short-term loans are sometimes available and can give you the money for a retainer quickly. Friends and family members may also be willing to donate or loan toward the divorce funds. Some people also consider selling large ticket items or taking on another job to pay for the divorce, but it’s important to talk with an lawyer before selling marital property or doing anything that could impact the family finances, as this can affect the divorce proceedings themselves.
If you’re not sure if you can afford a divorce and need to know what your options are, contact our Toronto office at 647-933-2397. We can look at your case and let you know how much your divorce may cost and what options we have for moving forward.