how do you know whether or not to litigate or settle during your divorce?
Divorce is one of the most traumatic events that a person could endure. If you have decided to divorce, it’s in your best interests to do it as quickly and cleanly as possible. The good news is that a huge percentage of divorces do not reach the trial stage as they are settled out of court. It’s the messy, complicated ones that go to court and that is usually where it becomes traumatic for all parties concerned, including you, your ex-spouse and your kids.
Divorce Can Be Expensive
If your case is going to court, it is highly probable that your lawyer will have to enlist the services of experts in divorce. This can include barrister, real estate agents (for appraisal purposes) or a property valuer, forensic accounts and expert witnesses. None of these professionals come cheaply so make sure you know what you are doing. Try to come to an amicable agreement with your ex-spouse as soon as you can.
When Do You Go to Court?
Often, dissolving couples have the best of intentions when the divorce proceedings start, but things do change, and it can get messy and complicated in the blink of an eye. You may have spent hours and hours trying to settle on an issue, and your spouse simply does not see things the way you do.
You are going to be discussing settlements on the following issues:
● Children matters
● Child Support
● Spousal Maintenance
● Property settlements
In principle, these issues should be easy for the two of you to sort out, however, ego, emotions, hormones, pride and even plain vindictiveness can play a role too. It is when these factors come into the equation that the trouble starts. Lawyers are detached from the situation and are therefore crucial in negotiations around a table or court.
You both need to determine whether you want to get involved in the costs and trauma of a court case. Work with your litigators to come to decisions that work for both of you. Look at the bigger picture and focus on what is important:
● Your sanity
● Peace of mind
● Your children's best interests
When you think calmly about the situation, you will realise that you’re placing your future in the hands of a judge. You should want to be in control of the decisions that are going to affect your lives from here on in. It may be a worthwhile suggestion to make to your ex.
You and your ex probably did manage to agree on things during your marriage, so in the interests of all concerned, work together and be fair to each other and it should all work out fine in the end.
Disclaimer : This article provides basic information only and is not a substitute for a professional or legal advice. It is prudent to obtain legal advice from a family lawyer.