If my wife wants a divorce, can I end up having to pay for her lawyer?

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If my wife wants a divorce, can I end up having to pay for her lawyer?

Her reasons for wanting to divorce me are weak but I’ve learned that, since my state is a “no-fault” state, it doesn’t really matter. She can get a divorce regardless. I am the supporting spouse and she is the supported spousal she has no income of her own. Can she hire a lawyer and force me to pay for him? I can’t afford to hire a lawyer for myself, much less for her.

Asked on January 18, 2012 under Family Law, California

Answers:

Kelly Broadbent / Broadbent & Taylor

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Your wife can possibly obtain an order to force you to pay for all or part of the legal fees.  In Massachusetts, the marital property is all joint.  If you are in control of the assets including bank accounts, and she has no control, it is very possible that the court could require that you pay all or a portion of her attorney's fees.


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