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Bad divorce advice damages financial security

During the emotional turmoil and insecurity about the future created by divorce, many Minnesota couples turn to their relatives and friends for support. However, they often receive well-meaning but ill-informed advice on finances and the law. Much of what passes for divorce advice leads to costly errors and is best avoided.

Financial challenges are likely when one family's resources must suddenly become enough to support two households. A couple seeking no-fault divorce may decide to cut corners on legal fees by hiring one lawyer. The problem is that an attorney can ethically only represent one of the parties to a divorce. The other spouse is left without legal representation and at a significant disadvantage.

If both spouses agree on the issues of who gets child custody and visitation schedules, child support may seem easy with use of the Minnesota child support calculator. The problem is that estimations, even from government websites, are not set in stone. Judges have discretion to order differing levels of child support. The same goes for alimony, over which a judge has even more discretion.

The selection of an attorney with experience these matters helps protect people during and in the aftermath of the divorce. A legal advocate can reduce emotional stress by allowing parents to focus more on their children, rather than obsessing over the details of property division. An attorney can also ensure paperwork is filed on time to protect the client from a lack of disclosure. Emotional stress can quickly lead to poor decisions, and it is worth having assistance during such a critical time.

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