Contrary to popular belief, the divorce rates in the US are not a near-even split as previously thought. Divorce is still a very real possibility and not something any couple looks forward to.

If you are preparing for your own divorce and your soon-to-be ex is not fighting you, you probably assume that you don’t need a lawyer. After all, you both consider ending your marriage to be the best decision, so why hire someone to help you out?

Even if you find your divorce to be moving along at a pleasant pace, you should still reconsider your decision to not hire a lawyer. Here are just three reasons why you should still hire a lawyer even if your split is amicable.

Your Children Need Financial Care

Regardless of who you and your spouse have decided is going to care for the children primarily, your kids still have needs that should be financially met by both parties. School activities and supplies, basic needs, health insurance, and even college assistance are all things you and the other parent will have to decide upon together after divorce.

Getting a lawyer to assist you in setting up child support for the non-custodial parent helps avoid financial conflicts in the future. Since the amount of money the non-custodial parent pays is determined by the state, you and your ex can move on with your lives knowing the funds your children are receiving are fair in amount and need little personal discussion.

Another reason to hire a lawyer when you have children is this: Your lawyer submits to the judge who has legal custody and what the rights of the other parent are. For the well-being of your children, it should be submitted legally who has the children when and who the primary parent is.

You can file the appropriate paperwork without a lawyer, but having one to assist you in the process helps ensure the needs and intents of all parties involved in the children’s lives are met.

You Have a Lot of Assets Together

You have your home, 401(k) plans, life savings, vehicles, and other items that you have accumulated throughout your marriage. An even split between you and your spouse would be fair, but things can get messy between the two of you when you begin to discuss finances. Hiring a lawyer can help you and your spouse evenly split assets accumulated together throughout your marriage.

If you live in a "community property" state, things can get even trickier: The term means that in the event of divorce, all assets that were shared during marriage are divided equally, even items that belonged to just one person prior to marriage. Your lawyer can help sort out the details of asset dividing in a divorce so you and your spouse don't feel jaded in the process.

You Don't Understand the Legal Jargon

Getting a divorce can be seriously confusing, and the amount of paperwork to fill out and the deadlines you have to meet can make the process intimidating. Hire a lawyer to help you understand the documents you and your spouse must fill out in order to make your divorce legally final.

Even if you have no children, major assets, or any real concerns over your split, a lawyer can help make the change in your marital status make sense so you can follow through with comfort and ease.

Getting a divorce doesn't have to be the hairy, scary, and tangled mess that you may believe it to be. Even with the amicable end to your relationship, hiring a lawyer is a wise choice. Consult with our legal team at Dougherty & Associates for legal assistance regarding your divorce today.