Going through a divorce is an expensive process. You will have to likely split your accumulated assets with your former spouse while adjusting to life without their income. At the same time, you will likely incur thousands of dollars in attorney fees.

It is a common concern for those facing divorce to worry about how to cover the costs of hiring an attorney to protect their interests. In the vast majority of divorces, each spouse will have the responsibility for their own legal costs. However, there are circumstances in which the Georgia courts may order one spouse to cover the attorney costs for their ex.

A substantial income disparity may mean the high earner pays

It is common for the spouse who doesn’t earn as much to worry about whether they can afford a decent attorney to represent their interests in divorce. Particularly if leaving your ex will mean cutting yourself off from household financial resources, you may not have the funds necessary to pay an attorney right now.

When the courts review your family’s financial circumstances, they can look at the likely costs you will incur for an attorney and how difficult it could be for you to pay for them. Stay-at-home spouses, in particular, may have the right to ask the courts to allocate the cost of their attorney fees to their spouse as a form of maintenance or as part of the asset division process.

The greater the income discrepancy in your family or the longer you have gone without earning an income, the stronger your case may be for your ex to cover the costs of the divorce.