Lawyers are likely to charge a retainer of up to $5000, and will bill you for services carried out on top of those covered by the retainer. This retainer will be higher the more complex the case. And remember, as a couple you will be hiring your own lawyers, so incurring two lots of fees and retainers, whereas in mediation there is only one mediator to hire. It’s why in a typical divorce case, costs can be up to ten times higher than with mediation. And that’s not even taking into account the emotional price you and your children might have to pay if you divorce is handled the adversarial way through the courts.