As a divorce lawyer I sometimes get calls from people who are thinking about a divorce, and believe that speaking with me is the best place to start looking for answers. The truth is that I am the person to talk to once you have decided to get a divorce.
The three points I discuss below can help you determine how to best decide whether you should get a divorce; and, if so, how you should go about it.
Seek Answers Outside the Legal System
If you’re in the contemplation stage, where you are not sure if your marital problems will be solved by ending the marriage, the best place to start might be a therapist. It can be an individual therapist or marital therapist. I mention individual therapy because we all need reality checks sometimes, to tell us whether we are being unreasonable with our spouse or to talk things through ourselves—sometimes hearing yourself voice your marital complaints can shed a lot of light! Marital therapy is, of course, for you and your spouse if your spouse is willing to participate.
When you’re not sure, this is the best option to start. After all you can still get a divorce if it doesn’t work, right?
Evaluate Your Options First
Once you are sure that divorce is the answer, it’s time to evaluate your options for getting it done.
When I say “evaluate” your options as you’re thinking about a divorce, I’m not talking about how to best “go nuclear” on your spouse—that is never good for anyone in a divorce, especially if you have children.
What I mean is for you to consider this:
- Can you and your spouse talk civilly about getting the divorce done? If so, this will make the divorce process a lot easier for the both of you –and your kids, if you have any.
- Are there sticking points? Consider mediation. If you want to get a divorce lawyer anyway, search for one whose knee-jerk reaction is NOT litigation first.
Divorce Law Encourages Settlement
Did you know that that:
- Before you get to trial in your divorce, you will have to go to mediation? and
- The divorce statutes are there to guide judges when the parties cannot agree on what needs to be done to get a divorce?
It’s true. It makes sense to work things out between you and your spouse. You’re the one that will have to live with the results. Moreover, the legal system is not setup to dedicate as much time as you may need to reach an agreement that may work for both of you. On the other hand, the option of trying to reach an agreement before litigating may be a quicker process. This also results in a less traumatic divorce process and low legal fees and court costs. The result of this process is an uncontested divorce.
Divorce litigation should be your last option to get your divorce done.
If you want to share your thoughts on the above with me, feel free to send me at email at my general email, firstname.lastname@example.org, and write “thinking about a divorce” in your subject line. I respond to emails within 1 business day.
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