Should I Represent Myself During My CA Divorce? Risks to Consider

Pleasanton CA family lawThese days DIY is all the rage. With so much information at our fingertips it can be tempting to try and strike out on your own, whether you’re trying to remodel the home, are looking to be a better cook at home, have old electronics to repair, and more. So why not divorce as well?

Family law in California is one area that does not lend itself to a DIY approach. For today’s blog post, we want to talk about the risks that come with representing yourself in court. The short version is: never proceed with any family law matter in California without first retaining the aid of a qualified divorce / family law attorney. 

What Are The Risks of Being My Own Attorney During my CA Divorce?

Here’s a rundown of the many different ways that your divorce could be derailed due to the lack of having proper legal representation:

  • Unexpected and hidden costs quickly stack up: Many people try to save money by skipping hiring an attorney, but the lack of experience navigating family law proceedings can backfire. Unexpected fees, lengthy proceedings, and unfavorable outcomes can all end up costing you much, much more than what you’d pay for an attorney. 
  • You face an uphill battle trying to get a fair settlement: You may think you don’t need an attorney but chances are your ex isn’t on the same page. Showing up without a legal expert who can advocate for you is a recipe for disaster, as you’ll be going up against the ex’s vastly more experienced and certified legal pro.
  • You face unexpected tax issues or complications: The federal and state tax codes are complicated as is, but divorce introduces even more layers of complexity and confusion. An attorney helps you account for this as he or she navigates you through the proceedings. 
  • You “lose” the case and end up with a worse outcome: There is such a thing as “losing” a family law case, whether you’re talking about divorce, custody battles, alimony disputes, and more. Remember that an attorney will have one goal in mind: your interests and the best possible outcome for your specific needs.
  • Overall higher risk of small but costly mistakes: Even things generally move along smoothly, you might be surprised to see how much documentation and formal proceedings are involved in this type of case. When you don’t have an attorney, you increase the risk of small mistakes all along the way. Mistakes in this arena can be costly, both from a financial and legal perspective.

Rely on an Experienced Family Law Attorney in CA

This is just a small sampling of the things that can go south when you choose to go without representation in any family law case in CA. Fortunately, we at the Law Offices of James P. White offer a risk-free way for you to learn how we can help.

Call us today to book a free initial consultation. You can reach us at 925-271-0999 to connect with our legal experts today.