The Pros and Cons of a Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Divorce


The State of South Carolina grants individuals the ability to represent themselves to obtain a divorce or to modify child support and child visitation. This is also known as pro se, a Latin phrase meaning “for himself.”

This seems like a great idea because—at face value—it saves these individuals from having to hire an attorney at a time when money is often tight.

Unfortunately, however, moving forward without the benefit of legal counsel may negatively impact your legal rights…and may end up costing more in the long run.

A trained family law attorney knows the process to get your children and you the best possible result. The attorneys at Harrison, White, Smith & Coggins, P.C., understand that you are likely facing the most important legal battle of your life. They are trained in the law and they know how to get it done and get it done quickly.

A DIY divorce often takes a long time simply because the “do-it-yourselfers” don’t understand the legal process, including how to correctly complete the required paperwork. This often means more trips to the courthouse and more missed time from work. Sometimes the court may even dismiss the case and the divorcing couple has to file a new action, forcing them to start over from the beginning.

Other potential pitfalls include the division of assets and alimony. The do-it-yourselfers are not able to protect themselves like those with a competent attorney; and unfortunately, some provisions of the divorce decree are final and may not be changed later.

You probably wouldn’t change your own transmission, even through you technically could. Call our trained family law attorneys at Harrison, White, Smith & Coggins, P.C., today. Your best chance to have a happy, successful future is worth the investment.

Allison Dunham


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