Tech Transformers

The app that wants to cut out divorce lawyers

App to help couples divorce for cheaper
App to help couples divorce for cheaper

Ending a marriage and splitting up assets can seem to the warring parties as only having one winner – lawyers.

The Divorce Statistics website puts the estimated cost of separating in the United States between $10,000 and $20,000, with almost every other marriage ending in a break-up.

Now two women from the U.K. are preparing for the launch a "self-service" divorce app which they claim will cut out thousands of dollars in legal fees.

The app, called Amicable, is the brain child of family counselor, Kate Daly and tech entrepreneur, Pip Wilson.

"A litigated divorce in London costs on average £40,000. Successful communication and preparation before you involve lawyers could save the vast majority of that," said Daly to CNBC Monday.

Daly, who came up with the app after enduring the stress of her own separation says the smartphone app sets out what you need in order to reduce both the cost and emotional stress of divorce.

"Most divorces are conducted in an adversarial way. We don't believe that divorce has to be a train wreck.

"The app helps you identify key tasks, from identifying financial documents you will need and how you might organize looking after children to how to budget you future life.

Daly says eventually you will need a lawyer, but much of the groundwork can be done ahead of then, negating the need to pay big fees to lawyers.

"Money saved could mean an extra bedroom or a garden when people go on to buy a new house," she said.

Law Society Chief Executive Catherine Dixon disagreed that lawyers aren't worth the money in the early stages of separation.

"Even the most straightforward divorce cases, where a couple has no children or any significant assets can benefit from face to face advice.

"An app or on-line divorce is not suitable where there is an imbalance of power between the parties, or if one side is being obstructive or withholding information and can result in settlements being unfair," she told CNBC in a statement.

Although U.K. based, the developers say the app isn't centered on any one legal jurisdiction, so people around the world could use it.

A similar web based start up called 'Wevorce' already exists in the United States which claims to shave off up to a third of cost to couples.

The Amicable app is currently in an open beta trial and Daly and Wilson hope to launch a full subscription-based model within six months.

Anyone wishing to use the app before the official release, can register on the website.

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