What if My Uncontested Divorce Becomes Contested?

Some couples planning to get a divorce in New City, NY intend to pursue an uncontested divorce.  It does happen sometimes, however, that planning to settle quickly does not work out.  There are many reasons why this can happen, but it can be a surprise to learn that the approach you thought you’d be able to take is no longer on the table.

Perhaps your former spouse spoke to friends and family and determined that a contested divorce was a better option.  If you were planning to move forward with terms of agreement you had already reached and your spouse announces a change in plans, you need to educate yourself as quickly as possible about your next steps.

During the process of a divorce, there are numerous issues that must be decided before you can move forward with your life.  These are related to property division, child custody and visitation, and alimony.   Even if you and your spouse thought these issues could be resolved simply, plans and perceptions may change.  The most important thing you can do to protect your interests whether you are involved in a contested or uncontested divorce is to retain legal counsel at the outset.

An experienced professional in your corner can advise you of the specific next steps to take if your divorce elevates from uncontested to contested.   You may need to reconsider your approach and prepare yourself for what the other spouse is likely to ask for.  You will want to brush up on the factors that judges consider in determining final divorce arrangements, too.   An alteration in plans for your divorce can be jarring, but you can help things by educating yourself and preparing for a contested divorce.

Three Rules to Follow When Hiring a Divorce Mediator

Divorce mediation is becoming increasingly popular not just in Middletown but across the state and country.  Still, it’s important to be informed so that you make the best possible decision in selecting a mediator for your case.  Follow these three tips to maximize your chances of success during divorce mediation.

Look for an expert in the field of divorce mediation.  Someone who has served as a mediator in numerous divorce cases will more likely be aware of the most common issues and how to help you navigate them.  Your divorce mediator should also be invested in helping you resolve the case outside of court in the most efficient and effective way.  To get your questions answered early, ask if the mediator is willing to work with you and your spouse during an initial divorce consultation so that you are both prepared for what to expect.

Second, look for an experienced problem solver.  There is no one pathway to successful divorce mediation in Middletown, so you need to find an individual who is capable of adapting and working through challenges without getting bogged down in them.  You may need to walk through various options before settling on a solution to a complex divorce situation, so selecting a mediator with the skills from the outset can significantly increase your chances of success.

Finally, seek a Middletown divorce mediator who is compassionate.  Even though there are important legal issues on the table during your mediation, this is also a highly personal and emotional process.  The mediator should be invested in the emotional and financial wellness of your family members.

What If We Can’t Agree On All Issues in Divorce Mediation?

It’s very rare for a Middle town couple going through a divorce to agree on all but just a few issues, but even where this is the case you may benefit from going through the process of mediation.  There is a myth that divorce mediation only works for those with few issues to decide or marriage dissolutions that could be described as “simple”, but that’s not the case.

If you believe that a few issues will be contentious in mediation, consider reaching out to a network of professionals to help you work through these concerns.  It is not uncommon to engage appraisers, accountants, and financial planners during truly complex divorces.  Combined with the experience of a mediator, a team of professionals with expertise in the field can help you work out issues that you previously perceived to cause gridlock in communication.

If you have engaged with the mediator and other professionals and still find that one or two issues are outstanding in the divorce, you can put together an agreement addressing all the settled concerns.      From there, you can attempt to litigate the remaining issues or you can take some space to think about your options and consider whether returning to mediation down the road might make more sense.

A qualified mediator in Middletown is an essential instrument in your divorce because he or she will know how to navigate through difficult situations and help you and your spouse find opportunities to compromise.  While it’s not guaranteed that you will solve everything related to the divorce in mediation, it’s well worth the effort to try things outside of court first.  You may find that you can work through divorce-related questions more quickly and less expensively than if you pursued litigation.

Three Reasons You Should Mediate Your Divorce in New City, NY

Contested and uncontested divorces in New City, NY can be successfully handled with mediation, an alternative dispute resolution process that puts the settlement in the hands of the parties seeking resolution and dissolution of a marriage.  There are several benefits of using mediation for divorce, including:

  1. Confidentiality.   A mediated divorce takes place in the privacy of the mediator’s office, keeping the situation confidential and out of the public eye.   In a litigated divorce, it is the opposite—the divorce is a matter of public record and in many cases, takes place in a public courtroom where others will hear the details of your private lives together.
  2. Cost-effectiveness.   A litigated divorce is expensive, with some costing around $10,000 for attorney and court fees.   The price can be especially high if there are children involved, as custody arrangements tend to be a point of contention in a divorce.   In a mediated divorce, however, the price of mediation is far less than the cost of litigation, and is often split between the parties.
  3. Less contention.   There’s no doubt about it—litigated divorces are highly contentious, especially when one partner feels betrayed by the break-up and seeks to bring that emotion into the negotiations.   In both contested and uncontesteddivorces in New City, NY, mediation is an alternative dispute resolution method that makes communication and respect the top priorities of the discussion, allowing settlement to occur with far less contention than would be present when both parties “lawyer up.”

Divorce Mediation – is it less stressful?

Mediation is a voluntary, cooperative settlement process in which a neutral professional helps you make practical, informed decisions to resolve your differences. It is used frequently and successfully by separating and divorcing couples who want to plan their futures rationally, in an atmosphere of cooperation and mutual respect. With the guidance of a trained mediator, you work together through a series of orderly steps to create a fair and reasonable agreement. The mediator helps you define the issues to be settled, gather and analyze the necessary information, and communicate effectively.

After evaluating your options, you–and only you–make the decisions that become the agreement. The goal of a successful mediation is to reach an agreement that is custom-made for your family, your finances, and your future. At the conclusion of the mediation process you will have a full and complete stipulation of settlement.

Alternatives to Divorce

Getting a divorce means your marriage is legally over, and you are once again a single person. You are free to remarry and you are in charge of your own finances, plans, and future. If you’re not ready for such a permanent break from your spouse, you can choose separation instead. Separation means you are living apart from your spouse—it’s not a divorce, and you’re still legally married. However, getting separated does affect the financial relationship between you and your spouse. The Agreement deals with custody, visitation, child support, spousal maintenance, asset and debt distribution, health insurance, life insurance, etc. The divorce documents just deal with

the divorce.