I have written on the topic of finances and divorce previously in more than one blog article. These topics have ranged from how much can someone expect to pay for their divorce to how to try and minimize the cost of their divorce.
However, recently after meeting with a potential client I realized I have not discussed the topic of how someone can go about getting the money to pay for our services. In more than one consult I have been asked “how do I pay for your services?” My response often has been “I do not know.”
Unfortunately for many people going through or facing a divorce one spouse member is often in control of money. This can make it difficult for the spouse not in control of the finances to hire a Texas divorce lawyer. This is because unlike other areas of the law Texas divorce lawyers require a large retainer before they will take your case. There are not contingency fee divorces.
In this blog article, I will discuss various methods that I am aware of that some of my clients have utilized to pay for our services when money was not readily available.
9 Ideas on How You Can Get Money to Pay for Your Divorce
- Can I get my Spouse to Pay for the divorce?
- Use Your Savings or Rainy Day Fund
- Borrow the Money from Friends, Family, or Coworkers
- Crowdfunding Your Divorce
- Apply for a Credit Card or Personal Loan
- Borrow Money from your Retirement Account
- Refinance your Vehicle
- Divorce Financing & Payment Plans
- Selling Valuable Personal Property
Can I get my Spouse to pay for the Divorce?
Even if one spouse doesn't have the ability to access the funds that are necessary to pay for an attorney it is possible for a Court to order one spouse to pay the other's retainer fee for an attorney. You can read more about this topic in our blog article "How Can I Get My Spouse to Pay My Attorney's Fees in a Texas Divorce?"
Requests for interim attorney’s fees is not uncommon at temporary orders hearings. Some problems a spouse seeking the other parties to pay for their divorce lawyer may encounter include:
- finding an attorney to take the case with no money down with the hope of getting other spouse to pay for their fees.
- The court might say no
- It could be a month or two before the temporary orders hearing where a court might order an equalization of fees
This means you will probably need to have some money to put down on a retainer to hire a Texas divorce lawyer so that you can make it to that part of the divorce process. Below are some suggestions on how to raise money to get to the Temporary Orders Hearing.
Use Your Savings or Rainy Day Fund
If you have savings one of the things you can spend money on is a divorce lawyer. Unfortunately for many people they do not have access to savings.
If you are not in a rush to hire a Texas divorce lawyer one of the things we discuss in another blog article “Should I Hide Money from my Spouse to Get Ready for my Texas Divorce?” is setting up a raining day fund in case, you ever need to hire a divorce lawyer.
Hopefully, you would never need to use such a fund for a divorce lawyer. However, we believe that is better to be prepared and not use such a fund than the alternative.
Borrow the Money from Friends, Family, or Coworkers
One of the most utilized methods that we have seen my clients use in order to obtain the necessary funds to hire our services is to borrow the money from either a friend, family member, or coworker.
Often it is a parent that has helped their child pay for our services. However, we have also seen siblings, other family members, or a new significant other pitch in. There have also been occasions where a coworker or boss has loaned money to one of our clients.
Crowdfunding Your Divorce
I have had more than one client utilize crowdfunding to help them pay for their divorce. It is sort of a twist on the same option as above just utilize the internet to expand the reach and ease of who you can borrow money from.
Depending on which crowdfunding site is used user can raise funds from:
- friends and
- random strangers
In order to run a successful campaign, you will need to open up about your divorce in a way that you would normally keep private. This means that friends, family members, your children, your ex, or you’re the lawyers of your ex-spouse may have access to that information.
A Judge may not look favorably upon your fundraising campaign if your children see what your saying. You will need to be careful what you say.
Some popular crowdfunding sites include:
Once you have chosen a crowdfunding platform and have your story up you will need to let people know. This can be done by:
- Facebook or other social media
Apply for a Credit Card or Personal Loan
Taking out a loan for your divorce may be one of fastest ways to get money for the attorney retainer fee and other legal fees that will be needed.
However, there are many different types of loans to choose from. Some loans will be faster to get then others. Some places to borrow money from include:
- Credit Cars
- Personal Loans from a Bank or Credit Union
Borrow Money from your Retirement Account
Some of my clients have been able to borrow money from their retirement accounts to fund their divorce. Something to consider when trying to borrow money from your retirement account are as follows:
In most Texas Divorce Cases the amount in a 401K plan that has been accumulated during a marriage is considered martial property. Any money borrowed may have to be accounted for during the divorce.
Some plan sponsors or employers:
- do not require spousal consent for an employee to take a loan or make a withdrawal from his or her 401K,
- However, many do
Another problem with being able to borrow retirement money is that not every 401K plan sponsor allows loans or withdrawals.
Refinance your Vehicle
Some clients have done cash-out refinanced loans from their vehicle to get money to pay for their divorce.
Somethings you should consider before doing so include:
- How much money will you be able pull out of the car?
- What interest rate will you be offered?
- Cars are a depreciating asset and lose value over time. This means that the loan will still be the as the car is losing value. You may be stuck in situation where you owe more than the car is worth.
Divorce Financing & Payment Plans
Some attorneys offer payment plans to pay their fees. One thing we do at the Law Office of Bryan Fagan is try and work with clients on paying their legal fees by offering payment plans.
An example of how are payment plans work be as follows:
Payment Plans for
Payment Pan for
$5,000 and $1,000 a month
$2,500 and $500 a month
In this example the potential client has three options:
- The potential client can pay the full $10,000 down and have no monthly payments
- Alternatively, they could elect to pay $5,000 down and $1,000 a month or
- They would work with a Junior attorney for $2,500 down and $500 a month
Selling Valuable Personal Property
It is not uncommon for valuable personal property that belongs to be sold. We have had more than one client sell their engagement and wedding rings in order to come up with money to hire us.
Before a divorce is filed there are no orders saying what can and cannot be done with property. This means if you need to sell property so you can have access funds you can do so. However, after divorce paperwork is filed this may no longer be the case.
If you want to know more about what you can do, CLICK the button below to get your FREE E-book: “16 Steps to Help You Plan & Prepare for Your Texas Divorce”
Other Articles you may be interested in:
- 6 Tips - On How to prepare for a Texas Divorce
- Why do divorces cost so much in Texas?
- How Can I Get My Spouse to Pay My Attorney's Fees in a Texas Divorce?
- How Much Will My Texas Divorce Cost?
- 8 Tips for Reducing the Cost of a Divorce in Texas
- Low cost and affordable divorces, attorneys, websites and divorce Costs in Texas
- Can I sue my spouse's mistress in Texas?
- Roadmap of Basic Divorce Procedure in Texas
- Child Custody Basics in Texas
- 6 Mistakes that can Destroy Your Texas Divorce Case
Law Office of Bryan Fagan | Houston, Texas Divorce Lawyers
The Law Office of Bryan Fagan routinely handles matters that affect children and families. If you have questions regarding divorce, it's important to speak with one of our Spring, TX Divorce Lawyers right away to protect your rights.
Our divorce lawyers in Spring TX are skilled at listening to your goals during this trying process and developing a strategy to meet those goals. Contact Law Office of Bryan Fagan by calling (281) 810-9760 or submit your contact information in our online form. The Law Office of Bryan Fagan handles Divorce cases in Spring, Texas, Cypress, Klein, Humble, Kingwood, Tomball, The Woodlands, the FM 1960 area, or surrounding areas, including Harris County, Montgomery County, Liberty County, Chambers County, Galveston County, Brazoria County, Fort Bend County and Waller County.