As recently reported by NBC San Diego, family courts in San Diego and Sacramento are now offering a one-day divorce option for couples who want to get their divorce finalized as quickly as possible. Because divorce can sometimes turn into a complicated and drawn out affair, many people will undoubtedly find the one-day option attractive. However, while a one-day divorce may sound like a good idea, rushing through even the simplest looking divorce could create severe financial repercussions in the future for some spouses.
The one-day divorce programs being offered in San Diego and Sacramento are a response to the large number of self-represented litigants currently before California’s family courts. Over 70 percent of family law cases involve a party who is not represented by a lawyer. The one-day program is designed to help these self-represented litigants more easily navigate the complex family court system.
While the program is designed with the best of intentions, however, divorcing spouses should hold off before signing up for such a speedy divorce. In fact, rushing any divorce can create major problems later on.
The main problem with such a quick divorce-and with self-represented divorces in general-is that spouses are often unaware of what their legal rights are during such a divorce. The New York Times recently gave the example of a Manhattan couple that decided to amicably divorce without seeking legal representation. Although the couple thought their divorce would be simple and straightforward, a paperwork error eventually led the wife to discover that she had a right to a portion of her husband’s pension. Had she not consulted with an attorney, she very likely would have lost this valuable asset.
In fact, the Times went on to report that the one-day divorce option is likely a bad idea for anybody with assets. While some spouses may be reticent about taking on legal fees, in many cases trying to go through a divorce without legal representation can lead to one or both parties getting far less than what they deserve.
Of course, nobody wants a divorce to drag on for longer than it has to. While it may be tempting to think that divorcing spouses who go it alone can finalize their divorce faster, the truth is that family law is a complicated legal area and in many cases self-represented litigants soon find the process to be overly time consuming and overwhelming.
An experienced family law attorney can help make this process simpler and easier to understand. By reaching out to a qualified family law attorney, divorcing spouses will have the help they need to not only navigate the family court system, but to make sure they get the fair financial deal they deserve following the end of a marriage.