Divorces can be messy, expensive and emotionally draining. When hiring a divorce lawyer, the cost is not the only factor to consider. You need someone with experience who is honest and fair. We researched the best divorce lawyers in Oklahoma City to help find an advocate for your rights during this complicated process.
Even though the national divorce rate has declined over the last few years, Oklahoma has one of the highest divorce rates in the nation. Many lawyers are ready to take your case; however, the search to find a lawyer you’re comfortable with and who is best-suited to represent your case can be overwhelming.
Types of divorce in Oklahoma City
While Oklahoma does allow for parties to file for divorce based on grounds such as adultery or abandonment, most are filed as no-fault divorces. A no-fault divorce is when the party filing for divorce believes there are irreconcilable differences between the married couple.
If the couple agrees to all terms of the divorce, including the division of property, alimony and child custody, the marriage is considered uncontested. Uncontested divorces are typically simple and straightforward cases. If the couple cannot agree and the divorce is contested, some common methods to finalize the terms in Oklahoma City include:
Mediation uses a neutral third party who works with the divorcing couple in an attempt to find a divorce settlement that both parties consider fair.
Collaborative divorce involves both parties hiring an attorney and working together on an out-of-court settlement. If the couple cannot agree on terms and the case moves to litigation, the parties must hire new attorneys.
Litigation is the most expensive and time-consuming option for settling a divorce. In litigation, the two parties go to court and let a judge decide any contested issues in the divorce agreement.
The cost of divorce lawyers in Oklahoma City
The average hourly rate for divorce lawyers in Oklahoma City is $240, though that ranges from $75 to $600 or more, depending on the attorney’s experience. The average total cost for a divorce in Oklahoma is $12,500, with $9,800 of that coming from attorneys’ fees. Cases that go to litigation over alimony or child custody disputes can cost $20,000 or more.
Most attorneys ask for a retainer, which is an upfront payment from which they draw their fees as the case proceeds. Some lawyers may charge a flat fee for certain divorce types, especially uncontested divorces that only require the attorney to review documents.
Most divorce lawyers in Oklahoma City offer a free consultation, which is an ideal time to discuss pricing and billing issues so you know what to expect.
Choosing a divorce lawyer in Oklahoma City
While trustworthiness and reliability are key qualities when hiring an attorney, there are many other things you should consider. Affordability is an important factor. Divorce can be costly, especially when one or both parties contest the terms of the divorce.
Attorneys also have different areas of specialization, and you need one with experience relevant to your situation. If your divorce is contentious, you may want to prepare for litigation and hire a lawyer with extensive courtroom experience. If you and your spouse are attempting to resolve contested issues through mediation, you need a lawyer familiar with that process.
Other circumstances in your divorce may influence your decision as well. If you and your spouse have minors, you need a family lawyer who knows how to handle child custody and child support agreements. You may need a larger firm with an extensive financial division if you have high-value assets that need to be divided.
Use your free consultation to discuss the particulars of your divorce and be sure the attorney is comfortable handling them. Other questions you may ask during your consultation include:
Are costs negotiable, and what payment plans are available?
What is the average cost of similar cases?
How long has the attorney practiced?
Can the attorney provide references from other clients?
Will any other employees of the firm be working on the case?
While it’s tempting to focus on the cost of an attorney, choosing the cheapest available option is rarely the best route. Divorce is a highly personal situation, and you should be comfortable with the attorney you hire. Consult with several different lawyers and choose one based on their fit with your divorce’s details and their ability to effectively advocate for you.
The Swartzberg Law Group
M-F: 9am - 5pm, Closed Sat and Sun
The Swartzberg Law Group in Oklahoma City is a family law firm that specializes in divorce with children, child custody and child support. Attorney Andrew Swartzberg is a member of local and national bar associations. Client reviews from Oklahoma City say he is honest, intelligent and has had success in divorce cases.
The Law Offices of Lawrence Goodwin
M-F: 8:30am - 5pm, Closed Sat and Sun
Lawrence Goodwin specializes in family law and divorce. The firm also handles child custody, paternity tests and child support. The website offers common divorce myths and resources to help clients understand the process. Oklahoma City clients say Goodwin and his team made them feel comfortable during their divorce.
M-F: 8am - 5pm, Closed Sat and Sun
Naidu Law has three attorneys who specialize in family law. The firm’s specialties include child custody, divorce, family law and child support. The founder also has experience winning cases before the Oklahoma Supreme Court. Reviews from Oklahoma City recommend the firm for its favorable outcomes and friendly, responsive attorneys.
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