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Online Legal Forms? Buyer Beware: Saving Money Now May Be Very Costly Later

By: Allison Schreiber Lee

I ran across an ad the other day for a “do-it-yourself” legal website–you can do your own pre-nup, your own will, your own trust, your own divorce. For some, the do-it-yourself way is the best way to go, but for most, doing it yourself is cheaper in the short run, but often very expensive in the long run.

I don’t understand why people in need of legal advice wouldn’t go to an attorney. Many attorneys offer free or reduced rates for initial consultations. In that meeting you may be presented with issues you had not considered and realize consequences to your actions that may not have occurred to you. You are talking to a responsive person who (hopefully) has real experience in the court where your case would be heard. Getting that perspective from someone who has been there, done that is invaluable. And getting advice from someone who actually practices law in the community where you live is an experience that cannot be duplicated by a website.

So before you decide that on-line or do-it-yourself is the way to go, remember that while you may be looking to save money or get a “quickie” divorce, many cases that are resolved cheaply at first take much more time and money to unravel when things go bad. When faced with someone who has tried to go it alone, I often find myself having to start over again, not from scratch, but rather from a messy predicament. So please, buyer beware.

For a meeting with an attorney about a family law or other legal matter, please contact one of the attorneys at Paule, Camazine & Blumenthal, P.C.


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Allison Schreiber Lee

Allison Schreiber Lee

Allison Schreiber Lee is a seasoned trial attorney and has been lead counsel in more than 40 jury trials. In 2011, Ms. Schreiber Lee was co-lead counsel in one of the longest jury trials in the history of the City of St. Louis. Ms. Lee has also tried more than 100 non-jury trials to verdict, including representation in divorce and modification hearings.