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Looking into online divorce? In an age where you can order your groceries online, Skype with family across the world, and order takeout with an app, you also should be able to get a divorce online too, right? Many of Utah’s divorcing couples are attracted to the allure of an online divorce; they see online divorce as a cheap, drama-free alternative to expensive lawyers and endless conflict. Unfortunately, a lot of people find that their economic, hassle-free alternative has turned into a logistical nightmare.

You’ve Gotten Bad Information:

During the divorce process, many people find themselves bewildered by questions and overwhelmed by uncertainty. Especially if the service you’re using is just downloadable blank forms without legal support. Although we live in an age where we can Google almost everything, an attorney will almost certainly be better at answering your questions. This is because divorce laws vary from state to state; some states have certain waiting periods and requirements before a divorce is processed. An attorney in your state will have the best answers since they will be familiar with the unique circumstances of your case and the laws in your state.


You Need to Hire an Attorney to Fix a Poorly Written Decree:

Many divorcing couples see Utah’s online, do-it-yourself divorce as the cheaper, easier option. Unfortunately, this is only true in a very small percentage of cases. In Utah, there are fourteen different documents (if you have children) to file before your divorce can be finalized. Making errors in any of these documents can further extend the length of an already painful process. And, depending on the mistakes made, you may need to hire an attorney to fix the errors.  This can be just as costly, if not more costly, than having an attorney from the start.


The Custody Arrangements Were Unclear:

If you and your ex-spouse have children together, you will need to be very careful in which online divorce program you select. Child support and custody are both points of stress and conflict for most couples with children. Since the outcome of these issues often affect the entire family, it is of paramount importance that custody arrangements and child support payments are clearly understood by both parties. If, after an online divorce, there is any confusion about the custody arrangements or child support, you may find yourself in an expensive custody battle.

That’s why we recommend online support or programs that help you fill out your divorce forms using legal language, and not just purchasing the fill-in-the-blank forms. You may fill out as best you can but because it doesn’t use proven legalese, it doesn’t hold up in court or is too ambiguous for judges and commissioners to interpret and rule on if future issues come up and you have to go to court.


The Assets Were Unfairly Divided:

Financially separating can be a taxing part of the divorce process, especially if you’ve been married for a very long time. In an ideal world, couples would be able to amicably separate everything fairly, and then go their separate ways. Sadly, the reality of dividing up belongings and assets is often far from ideal.  An attorney will have the best answers on which assets you’re entitled to, so it may be worth consulting with a lawyer, even if you opt to not retain the attorney long-term.


Your Spouse Is Refusing to Cooperate:

It isn’t uncommon for people to absolutely refuse to even hear the idea of divorce. Unfortunately, this can really drag out the divorce process. The emotional costs of an extended divorce process can be devastating.  If your ex-spouse is stalling the divorce process, an attorney can help get things going without your ex-spouse. Tragically, there are situations where ex-spouses use abusive tactics in order to control the situation. If your ex-spouse is emotionally manipulating you during the divorce process, an attorney can help protect you by making sure the terms of your divorce are in your best interests. Online and DIY divorce programs really only work if both parties are in agreement on the need for divorce and on the relative terms of the divorce.


It’s difficult to find something positive about divorce when you’re going through it. When you hear “divorce,” the first things that come to mind are usually “long and expensive.” Nobody wants the process to be any longer or more expensive than it needs to be. At CoilLaw, our attorneys are focused on making divorce a faster and less painful experience. If you need an attorney, we’re committed to representing your best interests in divorce. Even if you then opt to use an online divorce program after meeting with one of our attorneys, we are happy to have an initial consultation with you to hear the facts of your case and offer some advice so that you are best equipped to head into your DIY divorce.


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