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A high asset divorce is complicated; don't do it alone

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Maryland couples who have been through a divorce can attest that the process can be very expensive. In order to save as much money as possible, some couples may try to settle everything without help from a lawyer.

In fact, more than 70 percent of the matters related to divorce are handled by the couples themselves, who choose to act as their own legal representative. While some tasks, such as filing paperwork, can be done without the help of a legal professional, a couple should never attempt complex asset division alone, especially in the event of a high asset divorce.

Most marriages nowadays involve a large amount of assets, such as real estate, retirement accounts, 401(k)s and businesses. Many marriages also have children involved, complicating things even further. There may also be assets that the other spouse may not know about, such as pensions and life insurance. He or she could miss out on these additional sources of income, which is a costly mistake.

In order for a couple to handle a divorce on their own, they need to be able communicate honestly and trust each other. How many divorcing couples can do that? There is likely to be some anger and animosity toward each other, which is why it might be a good idea to at least have a mediator oversee the negotiations to answer questions and ensure fairness.

Even a seemingly simple divorce can end up becoming complicated if the parties do not have the knowledge to discuss all the issues involved. It's better to spend money on a family law attorney who can help navigate a client through the divorce process than for someone to lose tens of thousands of dollars or more due to an oversight or mistake.

Source: The Sentinel, "Are you able to do your own divorce?," Dennis Beaver, Dec. 6, 2014

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