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How Much Does a PA Divorce Cost in 2024?

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Understanding the Cost of Divorce in Pennsylvania in 2024: What to Expect

Many prospective clients ask us: How much is a divorce in Pennsylvania? The quick answer is that in PA the average cost of a divorce in Pennsylvania ranges from $14,300 without children to $21,500 with children, according to widely referenced research. However, while these numbers provide a general guideline, the actual costs may vary and the cost of divorce in PA is different in every case, and it depends on several factors.

In this video: Firm partner and Philadelphia Divorce Lawyer Melinda Previtera talks bout what you need to know when starting the divorce process.
Melinda Previtera, Esquire
Divorce Lawyer in Philadelphia

Understanding the Nationwide Context

The average cost of divorce across the United States stands at $12,900, referencing data from a 2019 survey conducted by the legal website Nolo. This figure represents the mean total cost of divorce as of that year. It’s important to note that these costs can vary significantly depending on the state and the specifics of each case. Pennsylvania, in particular, ranks as the 11th highest in terms of divorce costs nationwide. This ranking indicates that the costs in Pennsylvania are significantly higher than the national average, highlighting the state’s unique position in the broader landscape of divorce expenses.

Factors Impacting the Cost of Divorce

Several factors significantly impact the cost of a divorce. These include the complexity of the case, whether the divorce is contested or uncontested, the division of assets and debts, child custody arrangements, and the need for spousal or child support negotiations. Understanding these factors can help individuals better prepare for the potential costs involved in their divorce proceedings.

Ways to Reduce the Cost of Divorce in PA

The primary factor that affects the cost of a Pennsylvania divorce is whether both spouses consent to the divorce. Contested divorces often come with more arguments between the spouses. They often result in more time, attorney involvement, court appearances, and money to resolve the issues on the table. Settling as many matters as possible outside of court helps keep divorce costs lower.

In many cases, divorcing spouses each need to hire an attorney to help them get through the process. In many cases, those attorneys’ roles are indispensable. They keep the process moving smoothly and efficiently, help avoid unnecessary hearings, and ensure a fair divide of marital property. For some divorcing spouses, however, the assistance of attorneys may not be necessary at all, which can substantially lower the expense.

Filing a mutual consent divorce in Pennsylvania is the least expensive option. It often costs just a fraction of what other divorce approaches would cost. Or, amicable parties might choose an alternative form of resolution, such as mediation. In those situations, a mediator can help the spouses divide their assets and debts, develop custody and support arrangements, and more – all without the need for an attorney. Of course, mediation is only an option for couples who can navigate the divorce process in good faith with one another.
<3>Who Pays Attorney Fees in a Divorce?

One of the primary expenses of divorce is often the cost of retaining legal representation. In Pennsylvania, the court has the power to order one spouse to pay for the other’s attorney fees.

The judge will consider a few factors when making this decision, including the extent of the fees, each spouse’s ability to pay, and whether each spouse is acting in good faith during the divorce process. If one spouse’s actions directly led to the need to hire a lawyer or extend the legal proceedings, the judge may order the spouse who acted in bad faith to pay the other’s attorney fees. The court will also consider any additional factors that may help determine who should cover the cost of the attorneys in each specific case.

The Investment of a High-Quality Lawyer

Most attorneys bill at an hourly rate. When a divorce is contentious, attorneys could spend many hours on the case, and the cost will add up. However, the potential price tag should not motivate divorcing spouses to hire the cheapest lawyers possible to cut expenses. An experienced attorney is an investment that could potentially save a substantial amount of money in the long run.

Why? A less experienced lawyer might save money on fees, but that choice could also result in a lot of wasted time. High-quality divorce lawyers act efficiently to resolve a divorce as successfully as possible. Errors and oversights result when a lawyer fails to spend the time needed to pursue every detail. Missing important facts could cause one party to lose some assets that are rightfully theirs – not to mention lengthening the time it takes to move through the process. Getting a divorce lawyer to navigate the process could make all the difference in the overall experience and results.

Feel free to call our Pennsylvania legal team. We can give you the facts you need to make informed decisions as you move forward.

Client Testimonials

Here's what our clients have to say about working with us. Please note, results may vary based on individual circumstances.

Melinda Previtera, Esq. came highly recommended to our family. Her knowledge base, professionalism, and compassion paved the way for a successful outcome. Melinda is efficient, detailed, and informative. She helps manage expectations, and postures her client for a fair and equitable result. We are happy to recommend Melinda!

Jennifer A.

My experience was very good. Everyone was professional and attentive to my needs, keeping me updated every step of the way. I couldn’t ask for a better result, highly recommended.

David R.

My marriage life has been a hell for me for the past four years until I decided to put an end to what has to be ended. Choosing a lawyer was another additional stressful part of the long process. I’m so glad that I’ve found the right one for me at Petrelli Previtera. Life isn’t always fair, but at least having her in my corner, felt even better. I couldn’t recommend her highly enough!

Caitlin B.

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West Chester, PA. 19380
(610) 431-4012view details
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