Wife has millions. Do I have to pay her lawyer fee?

I was required to pay my wife’s lawyer even though she has several million dollars in the bank.  Can I appeal this decision?

Most likely, yes.  Although the law on what constitutes a “need” for attorneys fees varies between Florida’s appellate circuits, in most situations, it is improper to award attorney’s fees to a person who can easily pay their lawyer from assets under their control, especially if they have several million dollars in the bank.

That said, this analysis becomes more complicated if you are a high income earner that could easily pay your spouse’s attorney’s fees from your monthly income.  If this is the case, the analysis becomes harder and more fact intensive.  Ultimately, there is a point where someone does not have a “need” for attorney’s fees based on assets under their control, irrespective of the other person’s income.  You should consult with a divorce lawyer experienced in handling appeals if faced with this type of issue.


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