Help paying for a child custody battle

Divorce can be a nightmare for everyone involved. It is especially difficult for children who may end up in a custody battle. A custody battle may involve multiple court appearances, examinations from social workers, and money. Once the custody and visitation rights are determined, child support is then determined. But, even before you start paying child support, you will have to pay for the custody battle. There will be fees for appearing in court, and even more fees will be involved if you hired an attorney. Finding some extra cash to pay for a custody battle may be difficult, but it’s not impossible.

Sell, Sell, Sell. Finding extra employment to pay for a custody battle may not be a good option because the court may see your extended work weeks as a hindrance to physically being there to support your child. An alternate way to pay your attorney would be to sell some of the extra property you have. Electronics, musical instruments, anything that is sitting around and collecting dust should be considered. You might not have to pay a lot if you utilize one of the options below, but have some emergency funds ready.

Pro bono. Getting low-cost legal assistance is an option. Contact your state bar association and ask if anyone is currently doing any pro bono work. Every year, lawyers are impelled to take up pro bono cases, or cases “for the good of the public.” Pro bono work is not usually free, but it will be reduced from what he/she typically charges. You may also look into college law schools, as many graduate students studying law are also available for pro bono work, under the supervision of their professors or more experienced lawyers.

Family law. The Yellow Pages is still a great resource to use for researching companies, and its sections are categorized in a simple alphabetical fashion. There should be a “family law” section, where you can find attorneys who specialize in child custody cases. Don’t settle for the first one; contact multiple lawyers, especially those who offer free consultations, and compare their fees.

When you find a lawyer, ask about the preferred method of payment. Some lawyers work for an hourly rate, but it depends on how much experience he/she has, as well as the complexity of your case. (If you’re fighting for the custody of multiple children, lawyers may feel the need to charge more.) Stay away from lawyers who charge consultation or retainer fees, as they are more interested in making money. Also ask about how court fees will be handled, as you will be charged money to appear in front of a judge.

David Pilley

David Pilley

David Pilley is a May 2010 graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, with a B.A. in communication studies and a creative writing minor. He is a native of Raleigh, North Carolina.

He played clarinet for the Marching Tar Heels in 2005 and 2006. He also volunteered for STV, the student-run television station at UNC-Chapel Hill, in the spring of 2010. He shot video, wrote scripts, and acted for “Off the Cuff,” UNC’s longest running sketch comedy show. He has the rare distinction of having lived in a dorm all four years of his undergraduate college career. He was also on Franklin Street on the night of April 4, 2009. His future plans are to pursue a master’s degree in journalism and to one day work for the media as a sports journalist or broadcaster.

Being one of eight children, David realizes finance is an important topic to everyone, regardless of his/her knowledge of the subject. His interests are in personal finance, budgeting, and savings.

In his spare time, David enjoys watching sports and standup comedy, as well as doing crossword puzzles and writing in the first person. He also thoroughly enjoys trivia and, one day, hopes to participate on the game show Jeopardy!, where he will try to break Ken Jennings’ 74-game win streak.
David Pilley

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