Divorce in New York isn’t cheap, especially if there are attendant complications or legal assistance is needed. However, there are several ways to reduce the overall divorce cost when it comes to an uncontested divorce.
If children aren’t involved, and the spouses proceed with a DIY divorce, they can save a significant amount of money on legal services. This way, the divorce won’t cost much more than court filing fees.
Even though it is a simple and straightforward process, an uncontested divorce may still have complications and extra expenses. To go through such a dissolution of marriage, spouses in New York have to consider all the aspects of their divorce case carefully.
Uncontested Divorce With Children
Having children in a marriage may complicate even a simple uncontested divorce. In this case, the court will have to conduct a much more thorough examination of the divorce paperwork and arrangements as it needs to protect the children's rights. Thus, parents should consider several factors while handling an uncontested divorce with children.
Child Custody in Uncontested Divorce
In NY uncontested divorce cases, three types of child custody arrangements are commonly used:
- Sole custody;
- Joint custody with the primary residential parent;
- Joint custody with parents equally splitting primary custody.
Let’s take a closer look at each type.
- Sole Custody. Such an arrangement implies that the child resides with one parent responsible for all the decision-making regarding the child’s health, education, religion, and welfare. Thus, the non-custodial parent has a visitation schedule formed.
- Joint Custody with the primary residential parent. Under this arrangement, the child primarily resides with one parent, but the decision-making process is held by both parents together. The parties agree and arrange when the non-custodial parent will have the child.
- Joint Custody with parents equally splitting primary custody. This option is considered the most beneficial for a child’s wellbeing as both parents share physical custody and decision-making. This way, both parents get the opportunity to be equally involved in the child’s life. However, parents must cooperate to put their differences aside and get along for the benefit of their child.
Child Support in Uncontested Divorce
According to New York Laws, both parents are required to support their children financially until they reach the age of 21. Typically, support is paid to the custodial parent (the one who has the child most of the time during the year). However, if the parents share custody and spend an equal amount of time with the child, the one with the lower income receives support.
The amount of support is regulated by the Child Support Standards Act (CSSA), which considers both parents’ gross income and the corresponding deductions, including FICA or SECA. To calculate the amount of support to be paid, parents can use the NYS Child Support Calculator.
Child Visitation in Uncontested Divorce
Spouses commonly choose “reasonable visitation” for the non-custodial parent. Such an arrangement implies that the non-custodial parent is allowed to get reasonable access to visit their children at reasonable times. Thus, both parents can remain flexible regarding the visitation schedule.
The Cost of Uncontested Divorce Without Children
The cost of uncontested divorce in New York can differ significantly depending on whether children are involved. The average cost of an uncontested divorce when children are involved may rise to $25,000, while without children, it may be kept reasonably lower.
Even when minors aren’t involved, an uncontested divorce may vary in cost, depending on the particular divorce case. For example, if the spouses decide they need attorney services to handle complications to their case, they’ll have to pay for legal services, which aren’t cheap in New York. The average divorce attorney in New York may charge the spouses $350 an hour.
However, if the divorcing spouses proceed with an uncontested DIY divorce without children, they can keep the cost as low as possible, as they will only have to pay filing fees. The couple may also need online divorce services to handle their divorce paperwork, but it won’t cost them much. Such services are considered to be an excellent alternative to expensive lawyers. For example, the online divorce service Online Divorce New York will only charge the divorcing spouses $139.
Uncontested Divorce Cost Without Lawyer
Uncontested divorce without a lawyer in New York is much more affordable. When spouses decide to handle the whole process themselves, a divorce doesn’t include any significant expenses. Typically, in this type of divorce, the spouses won’t have to pay more than court fees and a filing fee, which in New York is about $210. The filing fee may vary depending on the county where the filing is done.
Thus, an uncontested divorce in New York without a lawyer will cost the couple at least $335 (total court and filing fees). In addition, some other expenses may be included, such as notary costs ($2 per signature), copies ($0.50-$0.60 per page), serving papers ($100-$200), etc.
Divorcing spouses may also consider online divorce services to get through their divorce documents quickly and easily. Such services are more affordable than New York divorce lawyers, yet their cost may vary depending on the service the spouses choose. Online Divorce New York charges the spouses only $139 to handle their divorce paperwork in 2 business days, which makes this platform a go-to option for those divorcing couples seeking a way to save their time and money.
How Much Does a Lawyer Cost for Uncontested Divorce
Even in an uncontested divorce, issues that require a lawyer’s presence may arise. For example, suppose the spouses want to have an amicable settlement of their divorce-related issues, such as alimony (also known as spousal support), debt allocation, property division, etc., but some complications arise. In that case, they may consider hiring a lawyer or using mediation services. This way, they can resolve their issues before going to court, reducing the overall cost.
Attorney fees may range from $175 to $450 per hour or even more, depending on an attorney's experience. In addition, the spouses should remember that attorneys commonly require an advance retainer. Thus, even an uncontested divorce can reach $5000 and more.
Uncontested Divorce Online
When the spouses don’t have a legal background and find it challenging to get through the divorce paperwork preparation stage themselves, they can choose an online divorce service. For instance, Online Divorce New York is a unique platform that provides excellent assistance to those couples that don’t want to stress about their divorce forms. This service helps the spouse select and fill out the appropriate divorce forms for their particular divorce case.
Online Divorce New York allows spouses to handle their documents in 2 business days from the comfort of their own home. All they need to do is complete a simple questionnaire about their marriage and divorce to provide the service with all the necessary information. Then the platform helps them generate ready-for-filing printable divorce forms and a filing guide.
Online divorce is an excellent alternative to costly divorce lawyers as they allow spouses to save their time and money during the paperwork preparation stage. The service also provides the spouses with easy-to-follow filing instructions to proceed with their DIY divorce.
With Online Divorce New York, the spouses can handle their divorce paperwork for as little as $139.