Going through a divorce is a stressful time and can affect your daily life. In addition to the emotional rollercoaster of the process of getting a divorce, many people are also afraid of the cost. Lawyers can charge $300 an hour (or more!) for their services, which adds up to thousands quickly, especially if you don’t have a partner willing to negotiate with you during this time. Suppose you’re going through a divorce but don’t want to spend thousands of dollars on representation from a divorce lawyer. In that case, an unbundled divorce service may be your solution.
What Are Unbundled Divorce Services?
Traditionally divorce attorneys could only take a case as “attorney of record .” This means that the lawyer is responsible for every detail and aspect of your case. While this is the easiest and most convenient way to go through the process, hiring a lawyer and paying for every activity they do for you is very expensive, and the final bill can be extremely costly.
For those who want to lead the process of their divorce, an unbundled divorce is a service that puts clients in charge. In addition, the unbundled legal service gives clients the option to obtain legal advice without having the absorbent expense of hiring lawyers to take over their cases.
With unbundled divorce services, clients can be in charge of their divorce and still have a legal attorney for a consult. However, you’re only paying for the consult time needed for your case. With unbundled legal advice, you can take on tasks and paperwork that you can handle and then pay your lawyer for the services you need legal advice for. In addition, clients who need an attorney to prepare documents but would like to handle negotiations and appear in court in their own representation are a good fit for this service.
Unbundling gives you more control over cost. Since your decisions during your divorce can significantly impact your finances, investing in a divorce lawyer for essential decisions regarding your family’s divorce and your life for the next several years is well worth the investment.
How Does Oregon Handle Unbundled Divorce?
You can choose from different services on an “a la carte” basis when you choose to pursue unbundled legal representation, such as preparation of settlement offers, strategic planning to settle out of court, drafting legal documents for self-representation, legal research, legal coaching for filing and self-representation in court.
If you end up in court, unbundled services can still assist with preparing a trial or hearing memorandum, preparing financials such as asset and liability spreadsheets, and monthly budgets. Your unbundled legal representative can also assist you in trial preparation.
Currently, the Oregon Rule of Professional Conduct 1.2(b) allows an attorney to limit the scope of their services as long as the client agrees to the limitation in writing. However, complex litigation and rare circumstances may not fit into an unbundled service provider. Lastly, clients must sign a waiver and agree to the limited legal service.
Limited Scope Representation in Oregon
Suppose you live in Oregon and you’re looking for unbundled divorce services. In that case, you’ll need to sign an agreement with your lawyer for a limited scope representation in Oregon. The attorney and the party represented on a limited scope basis agree upon the unbundled service of all documents.
When an attorney intends to appear in court on behalf of a party, the attorney files and serves a Notice of Limited Scope Representation in substantially the form set out by the Oregon Judicial Department. The unbundled service terminates when a Notice of Termination of Limited Scope Representation is filed, the case is concluded with a Judgment, or when an attorney withdraws.
Eggert Law Firm’s Unbundled and Limited Scope Services are here to support you through these stressful times. We are ready to help you move past the divorce process as efficiently as possible to get you the outcome you deserve in your divorce. So give us a call at 503-837-6111 or schedule your consultation and learn more about our cost-effective unbundled divorce services.