Maryland and D.C. Divorce: Do I Need A Divorce and Family Law Attorney?

Paper chain cut family with broken heart on gray background. Divorce and broken family concept.

It is possible to obtain a Maryland or District of Columbia divorce without hiring a divorce and family law attorney. However, there are many good reasons for avoiding a do-it-yourself (“DIY”) divorce. As an initial matter, cost is the most common reason that divorcing couples consider DIY divorces. However, hiring Maryland/D.C. divorce attorneys is not that expensive, and, as discussed below, the money is well-spent. If you want a job done and done well, it is best to hire professionals. If you have questions about getting a divorce, call the Maryland and D.C. divorce attorneys at The Law Offices of Thomas Stahl. We are here for you and ready to help. We have offices in Columbia, MD, and Washington, DC.

Why hire an attorney for your Maryland/D.C. divorce

Despite what you might have heard, filing for divorce and finishing the process is complicated. There are many legal forms to complete, and you will receive little help from the clerks at the courthouse. Then, after the initial filing phase, there will be two hearings before the divorce court judge (and, sometimes, many more hearings). The court is going to make decisions about property and debt division, child custody, child support, and alimony. Finally, the court is going to issue what is called a Judgment for Dissolution of Marriage. It may sound simple, but there is a legal art to making sure that the Judgment says what it needs to say.

Given all of this, here are a few reasons why it is beneficial to hire Maryland/D.C. divorce attorneys:

  • Legal advice and counsel leading up to filing for divorce — while minimal, there are still some legal requirements for filing for divorce in Maryland/D.C.; hiring divorce attorneys can help with meeting those requirements.
  • Completing the forms — the legal forms can be complicated for non-lawyers; there are financial disclosures and parenting plans to complete, for example; experienced Maryland/D.C. divorce and family law attorneys can help get those forms completed in a proper and mistake-free manner.
  • Providing experienced counsel on property/debt division, child custody/support, and alimony — every divorcing couple has options and choices with respect to matters in the divorce; experienced attorneys can provide good counsel with respect to those options; for example, a spouse can waive a claim for alimony — but should the spouse waive that claim?
  • Handling the court hearings — experienced divorce attorneys are trained to handle court hearings and appear before judges in a calm, non-fearful, and respectful manner; this can be difficult for DIY-ers
  • Obtaining child custody, support, and alimony while the divorce is pending — when a divorce is pending, the Maryland/D.C. divorce courts often make temporary decisions about child custody, support, and alimony; good divorce attorneys can assist in obtaining those benefits while the divorce is pending.
  • Avoiding unnecessary stress — court proceedings, in general, are stressful; divorce proceedings can be even more stressful since there is the judge and your soon-to-be ex-spouse to deal with; there is no need to suffer such stress since hiring Maryland/D.C. family law attorneys eliminates most of it; your attorney can handle the court and engage in negotiations with your spouse.

Maryland And D.C. Family Law Attorneys

Contact the seasoned and experienced Maryland and D.C. family law lawyers at The Law Offices of Thomas Stahl for more information. We have the skills and expertise you need. We have proven experience with family law for Maryland and the District of Columbia. Schedule a consultation today or call us at (410) 696-4326 or (202) 964-7280. 

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