No one likes to think when they get married that one day it might end in divorce. Unfortunately, divorce is very common, with at least 39% of marriages ending in divorce in the United States today. And while divorce rates in Louisiana have actually decreased over the past decade, the need for divorce attorneys still prevails.

With divorce comes a lot of stress and emotion, which can make handling all of the legal aspects that go into it considerably difficult. We can help with that. At the Law Offices of Michael J. Vergis, we represent clients in a variety of family law matters like divorce. Michael Vergis understands the delicate nature of divorce proceedings. It often requires heavy litigation and mediation to protect your assets and ensure you receive a fair distribution of property. If you are considering filing for a divorce or have been served with divorce papers from your spouse, contact our offices today to see how we can help you.

How Do I File for Divorce?

In Bossier and the state of Louisiana as a whole, there are a few different methods for how divorces can be initiated. For one, an individual can file for divorce and serve the papers to their spouse. Louisiana’s version of a no-fault divorce requires the couple to live apart for 180 days (or 360 days if children are involved) before the divorce can take place. If the couple has already lived apart for the required amount of time before filing for divorce, one of the two can serve the papers and the process can begin.

A party can file for an immediate divorce only in the case that their spouse committed adultery or has been convicted of a crime that is punishable by life in prison. However, an immediate divorce in the case that a spouse cheated might not be in the best interest of the other spouse. This is because it can reduce the amount of temporary alimony he or she may receive before the divorce is finalized.

Is a Divorce Attorney Necessary?

Having a lawyer is not required for divorce proceedings to take place, although it is highly recommended. In some cases, an uncontested divorce will go over fine without the help from an attorney. However, even if the terms of the divorce are mostly agreed upon, a divorce attorney can still be extremely beneficial. 

There are a lot of issues that arise in the process of divorce. Child support, child custody, alimony, and division of property are just some of the things that must be considered. A typical case requires intense evaluation, preparation, negotiations, and mediation. Sometimes the matters that must be tended to, even in an uncontested divorce, far surpass what the couple going through it can handle on their own. This is why it is so important to have a qualified Bossier family law attorney working for you on your divorce case. 

A skilled lawyer such as Michael Vergis understands the challenges that can arise in divorce proceedings and works to resolve potential issues for his clients in an efficient and amicable manner. 

How Much Does a Divorce Attorney Cost?

The price of a divorce attorney varies significantly due to there being many factors and considerations that come with these types of cases. You may be looking at anywhere from a couple thousand dollars to tens of thousands of dollars. Overall, the cost of an attorney as well as court fees depend largely on the specifics of each individual case.

It also depends largely on the skill and experience of the lawyer you choose to represent you. Their reputation and track record of litigating divorce matters will contribute to how much you’ll pay in attorney fees.  

Lawyers charge for their legal services in many different ways. The standard process is straightforward pay-by-the-hour billing. The average attorney hourly fee can range anywhere from $80 to $400 or more per hour. This fee covers research and preparation, phone calls, emails, meetings, and court appearances. 

Other times, lawyers may charge a flat fee for their work. Uncontested divorce cases will likely have a smaller flat fee. More complex, contested cases may be considerably more. With that in mind, you can expect a flat fee ranging anywhere between $3,000 to $30,000.

In addition to hourly and flat fee billing, some lawyers choose to charge on a retainer basis. A retainer basis refers to a fee paid in advance from which the attorney will deduct their expenses as the case progresses. If the case concludes quickly, you may even end up getting refunded any money that wasn’t used. On the other hand, if the case exceeds the retainer, you may need to provide additional payment. Your attorney will keep a complete record of all charges and expenses so you know exactly where your money is going.

How to Find a Good Divorce Attorney in Bossier City

Having a good attorney on your side can dramatically impact the process of a divorce. It can make all the difference in the way the divorce progresses and how good of an outcome you have in your situation. It can also be the difference between feeling as if you’re alone in this battle or feeling like you have someone advocating for you and protecting your interests. 

When searching for a good divorce attorney, you want someone who is experienced in family law matters. It is important that your lawyer fully understands the ever-changing nature of divorce and family law. 

Once you narrow down your search, make sure to read client and peer reviews of your prospective attorney. Don’t underestimate the power of a review. The phrase “their reputation precedes them” certainly matters in the search for a good lawyer. 

What others in their profession have to say is important, but what clients have to say is sometimes even more so. You want to gain a good perspective on what it is like working with this person and how they might go about handling your case. You should also do some research on similar previous cases and how successful they were.

Divorce Lawyer in Bossier City, LA

If you are in the process of a divorce, you need the experience of a professional family law attorney such as Mr. Vergis. At the Law Offices of Michael J. Vergis, we provide families with unparalleled service in a competent and caring manner. We work diligently to provide the best possible outcome for our clients. Call us today at 318-618-8129 or complete the contact form on our home page to request your consultation.