THE BLOG

Divorce Is Not a One-Size-Fits-All Business, So Why Do It Online?

04/08/2014 02:13 pm ET | Updated Jun 08, 2014

Technology can be great for grocery shopping or food deliveries, especially for those of us who appreciate convenience. However, it may not be the best tool to use in divorce. Technology can be a great facilitator in a number of circumstances, but its features aren't meant to handle a process as complicated as divorce. Here are five reasons why it may be better to hire a lawyer instead of trying to handle it yourself online:

1. Liabilities can be a liability.

People always think they know their assets, which, many times, is not the case. Yes, assets may be easy to find out, but liabilities are another ball game. Let's say your soon-to-be ex-husband sends a mortgage payment from his office, and you don't know what's outstanding. A lawyer will know the right questions to ask, whereas a computer can only operate from the information that you give it.

2. Your spouse could be playing hide-and-seek with your assets.

When you file for divorce traditionally, the court will freeze the marital assets. Online divorce, on the other hand, gives the other party the opportunity and time to move his or her assets around without being detected. Imagine your spouse knew that you were going to file for divorce, and he or she moved bank accounts out of the current asset pool. They are now more difficult to find, costing you more confusion, time and money.

3. Computers lack empathy.

Factors like alimony and child support require complex calculations that demand a lawyer's expertise. In a traditional divorce, a lawyer will take certain factors into consideration, such as health, lifestyle, number of children and any medical complications that the children may have in order to guarantee your best result. Often times, a lawyer will even arrange for a child advocate to take part in the case to ensure the child's emotional state isn't compromised. In an online divorce, there is no way to negotiate these factors.

4. Who gets the kids?

This is the most heartfelt and emotive element in a divorce procedure. Divorce is not a one-size-fits-all business, but online divorce treats it this way, with cookie cutter documents and routines that cannot capture the nuances in topics like child custody. Most of the time, it won't yield a solution that is tailored to you and/or your child's needs.

5. Chances are, you're not an expert.

Tackling a process as intricate as divorce is like trying to learn a language from a DVD the week before you leave on vacation. You'll understand the basics, but chances are, you won't be able to form a sentence, or, one that makes sense for that matter. You won't have insight from a professional who has extensive knowledge and concrete experience in the field. You may think you're going about it correctly, but you may end up doing more damage than good.

In essence, money spent on a qualified lawyer will pay back in multiples.