Call: 360-866-7393

7 Creative Ways to Help Pay for Your Divorce

Home / Divorce Blog / 7 Creative Ways to Help Pay for Your Divorce

How to Pay for Your Divorce in Washington State

7 Ways to Pay for Divorce Attorneys & Fees with Limited Finances

Are you contemplating divorce but you’re short on cash?

Are your finances holding you back from filing divorce papers?

Not having enough money to end a marriage is a situation that nobody wants to face. Finances shouldn’t hold you back from filing for divorce. But for many people, they do.

In a perfect world, divorce would be easy, but, unfortunately, it is complicated and expensive. Any time you’re dealing with a Judge, you’ll have to pay legal fees. The more property, assets, and children you have, the more expensive divorce can be. In this article we will show you 7 ways that you can help pay for your divorce when you are on a tight budget.

How to Finance Your Legal Costs in Divorce

Learn 7 Ways to Help Pay for Divorce Even if You’re Short on Cash

Nobody plans to pay for a divorce.

Nobody creates a savings account specifically for divorce funds.

So finding the money to pay for your divorce can certainly be a challenge. But don’t worry, we have 7 creative ways to come up with the funds to pay your legal fees. These simple methods can help you cover all, or at least part, of your divorce costs.

Divorce is emotionally taxing, no doubt about it, but it doesn’t have to ruin your finances.

First, remember that most of what you are going through is a temporary problem. In most situations, the man is hit hardest during the divorce process but, in the years that follow divorce, they grow financially stronger than their female counter part.

To get started, get knowledgeable and figure out a budget for what you will need to pay for your divorce. It is impossible to be exact, too many factors are unknowns. Question a family law attorney for input and talk to your friends about their experiences. Be sure to factor in the initial deposit and additional payments to your lawyer, additional court fees, and fees for consultations such as accountants and psychologists. You also have to consider the costs of temporary spousal support and child support, plus the expense of maintaining two households during the divorce process.

If you are planning on ending your marriage or sense that your spouse is headed in that direction, do start doing some appropriate financial planning.

This is the proverbial rainy day that you have been taught to prepare for;

  • Start Cutting Back on Discretional Spending
  • Set Aside Extra Money for Use Later
  • Do Not Make Big Purchases or Long-Term Financial Commitments Without Thoroughly Understanding the Potential Consequences

Then, apply the following methods to come up with the extra money you need to get your life back on track.

Here are 7 simple, but creative ways to help pay for divorce without breaking the bank.

1) Ask Your Ex-Wife to Pay for Your Divorce

If your ex-wife makes more money than you, you may be able to request her to pay your legal fees.

If your ex-wife doesn’t agree to pay, you may be able to have a Judge order her to pay. You’ll still need some initial funds to pay your divorce lawyer to get things started, but your ex-wife might be ordered to pay you back.

2) Pay for Your Divorce by Selling Your Property

You can sell off any property that you owned before the marriage, but only BEFORE divorce papers are filed.

If you owned property before your marriage, it is typically considered, Separate Property, and is generally fair game to sell. You CAN NOT sell anything that is considered, Community Property, or any property that you and your ex-wife acquired during your marriage. But be very careful, sometimes it is hard to determine what is community property and what is separate. Sorting out mistakes made can also get very costly.

Definitely don’t sell anything after filing divorce papers, as this looks bad to a Judge and may be prohibited by court order.

Make a list of any items you owned before you got married.

Think of any kind of valuable separate property you may have to sell.

Some items to consider are:

  • Stocks, Bonds, and Mutual Funds
  • Real Estate Holdings
  • An Extra Vehicle
  • Boat and Boating Equipment
  • Recreational Equipment (ATV, Jet Ski, etc)
  • Your Wedding and/or Engagement Rings
  • Collectables
  • Gaming Systems
  • Horse Trailers
  • Motorcycle and Riding Equipment
  • Mountain Bike, Kayak, or other Outdoor Equipment

Many of these items can be sold before divorce papers are filed if they were yours before you got married.

For example, if you bought a boat before marriage, you can probably sell it before filing your divorce papers. However, if you and your ex-wife bought the boat together, you can’t sell it. You’ll probably be able to sell separate property items without your ex-wife’s permission, but you may have to pay for those items later in court.

Any questions you have about what you can legally sell to pay for your divorce should be directed to your divorce attorney, as each divorce is unique.

3) Look into Your Retirement Account(s) to Pay for Divorce

You could borrow money from your 401(k), or other retirement account(s), to pay for your divorce.

However, not every 401(k) or retirement account allows you to borrow money, so check with your financial adviser or employer.

Even if you can take money out of your 401(k), you may need your spouse’s authorization to do so. If this is the case, have a discussion with your ex-wife to see if she’ll allow you to take money out of your 401(k). Mention to her that any money you borrow from your 401(k) will have to be accounted for in court. She may be more likely to let you take out the money if she thinks she’ll be getting some of it back.

A 401(k) can be considered community property since you likely put money into it during your marriage.

If you put funds into your 401(k) before marriage, then that money may be more available to you. However, every divorce case is different and, as always, you should speak with your divorce lawyer to see what 401(k) funds your ex-wife could receive.

4) Help Pay for Your Divorce with Crowdfunding

Crowdfunding is when individuals donate funds to a cause through an online medium.

You can crowdfund anything these days—a necessary surgery, a creative project, or a vacation.

Why not crowdfund your divorce?

Some popular crowdfunding sites are GoFundMe, PlumFund, FundedJustice, and Kickstarter. FundedJustice is specifically set up for donating toward legal fees.

To make a campaign to pay for your divorce, all you have to do is create an account on a crowdfunding site, share your campaign on your personal social media profiles (like Facebook and Reddit), and your friends, family, and even some strangers may contribute money to help pay for your divorce!

But, you should be careful how you phrase your social media posts about your divorce.

Don’t say anything cruel about your ex-wife (no matter how much you want to), because it could be used against you in court later. You don’t want to look bad to the Judge, because it could negatively affect the outcome of the divorce for you. Simply post on social media that you need money for a divorce, along with a link to the crowdfunding site you choose.

You should also contact your friends and family and ask them to share this post with their followers to increase your chances of receiving donations.

5) Take Out a Loan to Pay for Your Divorce

You can take out a personal loan from your bank or credit union to pay for your divorce.

Budget the minimum amount you need and apply for a loan that covers all your legal fees. If you’re in good standing with the bank or credit union, and you have a good credit score, you may get a low interest rate.

You can also ask friends or family for a loan.

This is your time of need; it’s possible that they will be willing to help you.

6) Finance Divorce with a Second Job, Project, or Hobby

It doesn’t have to last forever but picking up a part-time job, a specific project, or seasonal work can add to your income and keep you busy during your transitional time.

Remember how you used to come up with extra cash mowing your neighbor’s lawn or doing some extra work for your parents? Those options are still out there. Many businesses, like Home Depot and Target, are set up to employ people who have other commitments.

Think out of the box, place an ad, or check out what is available on Craigslist.

Consider trying to earn some money off of what you do for fun.

If you like woodworking, make bird houses, picnic tables, or something else that you can sell online or at a craft fair. If you are good with computers, offer your services as a consultant. Think creatively.

7) Pay for Your Divorce with a Credit Card

You can also open a new credit card, in only your name, and charge divorce fees to it.

This may or may not be the best option to pay for your divorce depending on your credit score and credit limit, but it is an option.

You will need to open a separate bank account, in your name, to pay for your divorce on the credit card. Paying with the credit card from a bank account you and your ex-wife share may negatively affect your divorce outcome.

Keep in mind that divorce is expensive and that you may not be able to charge all legal fees to a credit card. But it can be very beneficial.

These 7 methods are a good starting place to help you gather funds to pay for your divorce.

You’ll be able to alleviate some of the financial burden of divorce with these suggestions.

Divorce is emotionally and financially difficult, but, hopefully, using these tips will help you relieve some stress. Don’t let financial problems hold you back from filing for divorce and living the life you deserve! If you need a Tacoma family law attorney, give us a call today.


Now that you know how to pay for divorce, you are probably wanting to keep the overall cost of your divorce to a minimum. Well, you’re in luck. We have a free, printable checklist of 40 ways you can save money on your divorce! 

Click here to download a checklist of 40 tips for saving money on divorce.

Real People, Real Results

Divorce Lawyers for Men Reviews

"I never thought my wife would agree to anything. After a few discussions though, we were able to agree on a lot of issues concerning the children. Divorce Lawyers for Men helped me put those agreements in writing and resolve my divorce with less conflict."

"Divorce Lawyers for Men was very helpful with my case. The staff and attorneys are very knowledgeable and provided great advice. They provided me understanding of various courses of action and brought to light specific things I wouldn't have thought of. Most importantly respected my decisions and beliefs in finalizing my case."

"My wife wanted to live in our house with her new boyfriend while I kept paying the mortgage. Divorce Lawyers for Men made sure the court saw all our property and debts. We sold the house and split the proceeds. I didn't have to pay for any free rides."

"I never wanted to get divorced. One day my wife came home and said that she had met someone else. Why do I have to lose my house and my children just because she is done with our marriage? Thankfully, I hired Divorce Lawyers for Men."

Washington's Only Statewide Family Law Network

Select an Office near You.

1520 140th Ave NE #200
Bellevue, WA 98005
2727 Oakes Ave #201
Everett, WA 98201
555 W Smith Street, Suite 106
Kent, WA 98032
3025 Limited Ln NW #200
Olympia, WA 98502
Port Orchard
1740 Pottery Ave #300
Port Orchard, WA 98366
2102 E Main Ave #203
Puyallup, WA 98372
701 5th Ave #4200
Seattle, WA 98101
1008 N. Washington St., Second Floor
Spokane, WA 99201
1015 Pacific Avenue #301
Tacoma, WA 98402
237 NE Chkalov Dr #212
Vancouver, WA 98684