divorce cost

What Is the Average Cost of a Divorce in Missouri?

divorce cost

If you’re unhappy in your marriage and can’t see a way to reconcile with your spouse, filing for divorce can be a good choice for your emotional health and well-being. But like most legal proceedings, getting divorced can be costly. In fact, divorces in Missouri can range in price from as little as a few thousand dollars to more than $30,000 depending on the complexity of the situation. Here’s what your Missouri divorce attorney wants you to understand about the average cost of divorce and the factors that influence what you’ll pay.

The Fees Are Standard By County

When you file for divorce, you’ll typically need to file with the county in which you live. The fee to file will vary from county to county, but it typically costs around $150 for couples without minor children and up to $250 for couples with minor children. If you’re interested in seeing how much filing fees cost in your area, speak with your Missouri divorce attorney or contact your county.

You’ll Pay Different Rates Depending on the Type of Divorce You Choose

There are two types of divorce that you can typically file for: traditional divorces and uncontested divorces. 

Traditional divorces are ones in which you rely on your attorney to represent your case and argue on your behalf in front of a judge. These divorces are most beneficial for couples who may not agree on everything or who have tons of assets that may not be easy to distribute in a fair and equitable way. 

Uncontested divorces are those where you and your spouse are in agreement on the terms of your divorce. You’re able to determine who receives what, reach custody agreements that work for both of you, and are comfortable negotiating terms with each other as needed. Effectively, you’re doing most of the work.

Uncontested divorces typically cost less than traditional divorces because the attorney is really there to advise you. You and your spouse are doing the bulk of the work and using your attorneys for legal advice. Traditional divorces typically cost more because the attorney is having to do more work to ensure that the divorce goes smoothly and that the settlement is fair.

Different Attorneys Can Charge Different Rates

Divorce attorneys across the state can also charge different rates. These rates are largely based on their experience, the demand for their services, and other similar factors. You may find that a more experienced and well-known Missouri divorce attorney may cost more than one with less experience or less demand for their services. That doesn’t mean the less experienced attorney won’t be able to represent your interest well. It just means you’ll want to do some due diligence before you choose a lawyer to work with.

You Can and Should Shop Around

It’s best to schedule consultations with several attorneys before you choose to partner with one. During these consultations, ask each attorney about the rates they charge, but also ask them about their experience helping people like you or representing divorce cases similar to yours. 

This will help you choose the attorney whose experience best aligns with your needs and whose rates fit within your budget. Remember, it’s best to choose an attorney you’re comfortable working with rather than choosing the cheapest option possible.

Schedule a Consultation With Columbia Family Law

Getting divorced will cost you money, but if you and your spouse are sure that it’s the right fit for your futures, it can be well-worth the investment. Just make sure you’re working with an experienced Missouri divorce attorney from the very beginning. 
At Columbia Family Law, we’re here to help. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.