Keeping Costs Down on Divorce – Part 2: Experts

Written by on April 28, 2013 in Cost Saving Tips

When the parties find themselves in need of an expert such as a forensic evaluator or a real estate appraiser, or  it is more economical if the parties agree to jointly retain the expert(s) as opposed to each party hiring their own expert.  While many parties then share the expert fees or pay it from a community property account, it is important to note that the parties do not necessarily have to equally share the cost of the joint expert, as in many cases, one party has the ability to pay all or a greater share of the expert.  While the paying party may think it unfair, it is worth noting that the law permits the Court to order one party to pay for the fees of both experts if the parties do not retain a joint expert.

When one party pays all or the majority of a joint expert’s fees, the other party often fears that the expert will then be biased in favor of the paying party.  The non-paying party should be assured that experts accepted by the Court would not risk their professional reputations in such a way.  These experts are frequently relied upon by the Courts and the various attorneys.  If an expert was found to be unscrupulous, that expert would no longer be appointed as a expert by the Courts, nor would any attorney feel comfortable retaining that expert.  These experts build their careers with their expertise, knowledge, and professional reputation.  They would not sacrifice their hard-earned reputation for any case, and their integrity and professionalism will always prevail.
Therefore, if there is a need for an expert in your case, the parties may want to consider retaining a joint expert to keep the costs down.

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