Question: Can one lawyer represent both sides in a divorce case in Florida?
No. A lawyer cannot represent both sides in a divorce case – not even in an uncontested divorce case where both sides agree on the terms of a settlement agreement.
It would be a conflict of interest for a lawyer to represent both sides. For example, suppose that a couple was married for a year and wanted to get a divorce. Before talking to a lawyer they agreed that the Husband would pay alimony to the Wife for the rest of her life.
Now suppose that they were able to hire the same lawyer so that they could get their divorce done quickly and inexpensively. A lawyer representing the Husband would almost certainly tell him that there are only a very few limited circumstances in which a judge would award permanent alimony after a one year marriage.
This legal advice would be great for the Husband. However, the lawyer in this scenario also represents the Wife. The lawyer’s opinion about the alimony would be awful for her because now the Husband would likely refuse to pay alimony for the rest of her life. In this scenario, the lawyer did a disservice to the Wife in offering the Husband valuable legal advice.
This is a clear conflict of interest and shows why one lawyer cannot represent both sides in a divorce case.