Do both parties in a divorce proceeding need an attorney?

The answer is yes if it is going to be a contested divorce and no it’s not necessary, if it is going to be an uncontested divorce.

However, even in an uncontested divorce the attorney may only represent one of the parties not both.  Generally an uncontested divorce consists of the parties sitting down and deciding between them how they wish to arrange custody of the children if any and how to divide the marital assets and debts.  That list is brought to the attorney of one of the parties who takes the information and creates a settlement agreement to be signed by both parties along with all the other required documents.

One of the required documents is a waiver of a non-represented party.  This waiver is signed by the unrepresented party and it explains his or her right to have an attorney and that the initial attorney only represents the spouse who hired him.  It further encourages the unrepresented party to seek legal counsel if they feel they need to.

So if all the documents are properly signed and executed then submitted to the court the court must the hold the documents for 30 days after the expiration of the 30 days the Judge will sign the order and the parties are divorced.  The divorce will be final after the 42 day appeal time expires.