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Every family law client heading into a divorce asks, “How much will this cost?” This is a cautionary tale outlining how two very similar divorces, in terms of accumulated assets, valuation, division of property and issues involving methods of resolution, can result in wildly divergent costs. In both of the cases described below, the couples divorcing were middle-aged and separating after a marriage of more than a decade with a substantial estate to divide.  These stories are based on real cases but details have been changed.