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How much of my joint asset money can I spend on an attorney and on personal expenses

Dover, MA |
Attorney answers 5

Best Answer

You may spend what is necessary and reasonable, don't go overboard or the court may and still might order that amount attributed to your side of the marital estate. The rule is that you may use joint assets for ordinary and necessary expenses which include legal fees. As far as personal expense, food, shelter, reasonable clothing. I wouldn't buy a fur coat or a diamond bracelet unless you are very wealthy and that is ordinary to you. Take care and I hope it works out, moreso I hope that you find happiness.

Legal disclaimer: The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The response does not form an attorney-client relationship, nor is it intended to be anything other than the educated opinion of the author. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. The response given is based upon the limited facts provided by the person asking the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change. Attorney is licensed to practice law only in the State of Massachusetts. Responses are based solely on Massachusetts law unless stated otherwise.

Howard M Lewis

Howard M Lewis


I agree with counsel.


Usual expenses and there is defined limit on attorney fees

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You are entitled to pay your personal expenses as you normally would have prior to the filing of divorce. The automatic restraining order is intended only to prevent either party from "gifting" significant sums of money, or otherwise, spending significant funds during the pendency of the divorce. You are entitled to utilize funds, joint or individual, to retain an Attorney to represent you as long as the amount is reasonable.

Attorney Velez Harris may be reached at (413) 788-4555, during regular business hours, or anytime by email at: All of Attorney Velez Harris' responses to questions posted on AVVO are intended as general information based upon the facts provided within the question and are based on Massachusetts' law, unless otherwise indicated. The responses are provided for educational purposes of the public only, and not any specific individual. Her responses to any questions are not legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. Attorney Velez Harris is licensed to practice law in Massachusetts and Connecticut.


Attorneys fees may be expended and must be reported on your financial statement. You may also continue to spend your money consistent with how you spent your money prior to filing for divorce. As the others have said, you may not make any substantial transfers of money or property and you should take care not to make any unreasonable purchases.


I would agree with the other answers you have received, but you can also ask the Court for a pretrial advance distribution of the assets in your estate if you have enough of them. Generally, a Court will allow you to do this if the other side has spent money without permission (before the divorce) or if you will need money for attorney's fees or experts. However, you should definitely consult with an attorney before taking these steps.

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