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The filing of the action, would be paid by the moving party. As such, if another owner is trying to get the Judge to partition the property, they would have to incur the legal costs. Now, there is nothing unreasonable about asking for more time to perform your due diligence before making an offer and it would be foolish for them to simply refuse to allow this, if they want to settle this and are acting in good faith. If you need more time, tell them how much more and you can share you will have a proposed offer by _____ date.
It is at your discretion. If you know the amount which you want to be bought out, you can certainly respond and do it on your own. If you can agree on a buy out price, their attorney would likely draft the agreement. It could be at that time, that you retain an attorney to review the language, just to make sure you are protected.
Yes, that is fine. There is nothing wrong with handling this on your own, if you are comfortable and saving the legal fees.
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Great to hear back from you. Since this is outside the scope of the original question, the site does require it to be posted as a new question and myself or another expert would be happy to answer it. I thank you for understanding and just ask that you rate my help at the top, so the site provides me with he credit for the help I provided above, earlier today.