One of the most frequent questions I get asked is, "How can I keep my legal costs down during my divorce?"During your matrimonial litigation, it is important to research basic concepts of law in your state so that you know what you are looking for and what questions to ask your attorney. Concepts such as alimony, child support, equitable distribution, timelines for pleadings, and discovery are all commonly used phrases that are easily definable through the Internet. You can go to reputable special feature websites that will give you an amalgam of information about divorce law in the state where you reside and where your case will be heard. The knowledge that you arm yourself with gives you a way to be ahead of your spouse; it also cuts the time you would be billed by your attorney for asking such rudimentary questions. In addition, you can save thousands of dollars by shifting the lion's share of the work to the associate working under the partner or hired attorney. For example, a partner may bill out at a rate of $425 per hour, but the associate may bill out at an hourly rate of $210, With the associate drafting all documents and , doing the day-to-day work, you could save $215 for every hour worked on your file. There are other, less expensive paths you can choose to take in your case. You always have the right to enter mediation, which is a method of dispute resolution involving a neutral third party that tries to help reach a mutually agreeable solution, but whose decision is not binding. The selection of the mediator is important, as you want to choose one with, substantial experience and knowledge in divorce litigation. The mediator gathers information; obtains proposals from each side, and formulates a proposed settlement that is a compromise generally from both parties. You also have the right to go to arbitration, which is the same concept, but the decision that the arbitrator makes is binding. Arbitration is confidential and private. Neither the proceedings nor the records are available to the public. The arbitrator hears the positions of both parties, determines the fact (as if he or she were a judge), applies the law, and makes a binding decision, which becomes the substance of the divorce judgment. These options are payable by both litigants, and either may have attorneys present if they wish.