When one Geneva, Illinois woman wanted to divorce her spouse but found herself short on the funds necessary to hire an attorney, she turned to a rather unusual source to obtain the money she needed to hire an attorney: crowdfunding. Crowdfunding sites allow users to create a public webpage in which they detail how much money they would like to raise and for what purpose. People who view the page on through the crowdfunding website are then able to donate any amount they see fit toward the particular person and/or cause. In the case of this woman, a short time after she created her crowdfunding page, she had raised nearly one-third of the money she needed to retain an attorney.
Methods to Fund Your Legal Representation
Whenever there is a contested issue in your divorce – child custody, alimony, or property division, for example – it is always a good idea to have some type of legal representation. Case after case illustrates the general principle that when two spouses head to court for a divorce and one of the spouses has legal counsel, that spouse is the one who wins the battles (more often than not). But with some attorneys charging thousands of dollars in upfront costs and fees, how can someone living paycheck to paycheck hire legal counsel?
- Speak with the attorney directly about his or her costs and methods by which you can meet them. Sometimes an attorney can work out a payment plan with you that fits with your budget and resources. If you truly cannot afford the attorney’s services, ask if that attorney or another in his or her office will take your case pro bono – that is, for little or no fee. Although no attorney is required to do so, bar associations encourage their attorney members to provide a certain number of pro bono hours each year.
- Look for low-income legal services that are available in the State of Illinois. Many of these programs take only a limited number of cases each year depending on their resources.
- Court orders for temporary attorney’s fees may be an option for you and your attorney to consider. A court can order your spouse to pay your attorney’s fees as part of your divorce and/or while your divorce is pending. Typically the court will do this where your spouse makes significantly more income than you do and/or was responsible for paying a majority of the household bills while the two of you were married.
Our team of experienced DuPage County divorce attorneys is dedicated to helping Illinois residents obtain the best possible results in their divorce proceedings. We pride ourselves on the attention and care we provide to our clients. Our firm strives to help our clients reduce attorney fees and avoid unnecessary court appearances. Contact the Abear Law Offices for experienced and dedicated help in protecting your assets and future during and after an Illinois divorce.