We all get married, hoping to live a happy life till death do us part. However, life does not always follow the path we plan, and things can go in a different direction. When you are at a point where your marriage does not work anymore, no matter what do to try to save it, you may have no option other than to get a divorce. There are five primary methods to consider when deciding how to end your relationship, and it is essential to know all your options.
As the name suggests, this divorce option entails couples doing all the heavy lifting during the divorce process. Couples who choose to take this path mainly cite “saving money” as the motivating factor of settling for the do-it-yourself divorce. While this may sound attractive since you are not paying for professional services, you might make some significant mistakes. Especially if you do not understand all your options when separating, make poor choices on the issues you do understand, or file the legal paperwork incorrectly. This option is generally not recommended unless you know what you are doing.
Using an online divorce service can save time and money; however, similar to DIY, this is not for everyone. Online providers are not acting as attorneys or mediators; they simply help fill out paperwork for a divorce. If you and your spouse are not on the same page on all the issues you face while separating, you should speak to an attorney or mediator. However, if there is complete agreement, and it is purely a matter of filing the right papers with the court, an online divorce service could be a good fit.
Litigation is the most common option during a contested divorce because each spouse wants to get their way. It involves both parties using attorneys to fight for them on critical issues such as the division of assets, child custody, and alimony. Many divorce litigations take a long time, which generally makes it the most expensive method.
In as much as divorce litigation may take a toll on the emotions of everyone involved, including children, it is the only option available when a couple cannot work together and agree on how to resolve their issues. (It may also be the only option when domestic violence is involved.) When filing a complaint for divorce, the plaintiff has to cite reasons for their case. They include drug addiction, desertion, bigamy, cruelty, irreconcilable differences, insanity, domestic abuse, separation, and adultery. The defendant can then file an answer, and the case proceeds from there.
In a collaborative divorce, each spouse hires a lawyer to reach an agreement about the divorce terms. The focus of this type of divorce is conflict resolution, compromise, and joint decision-making. Although collaborative divorce is generally less expensive than litigation, it can still be costly because attorneys’ fees can add up. The attorneys also have to recuse themselves if the couple cannot agree, and the divorce needs to go to court. At this point, spouses have no option but to restart the entire process.
Divorce mediation uses a neutral third party (mediator) to help the separating spouses reach an agreement on crucial issues. In mediation, the mediators do not dictate the terms of the divorce. Instead, they help the couple understand each other’s perspectives and reach a compromise. This is an excellent option if you can work with your spouse to come to an agreement and want to keep the divorce costs down.
We hope this article helps you understand your options for getting a divorce. If you have any questions or wish to explore your divorce options, get in touch with AJC Law. We will help you make the right decision during this challenging time.
Call 201-664-0540 or set up a free consultation to set up a time to speak.