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What You Need to Know About Divorce Mediation vs. Litigation

There are many decisions that need to be addressed when you are going through a divorce. Not only are you legally ending the relationship, but there are also details relating to the household, children, and other life logistics that need to be handled in the divorce paperwork.

It’s rare for both people to have the same perspective and opinions about how everything should be handled. In most situations, disagreements will come up and emotions are high. The way you manage the situation is important now and in the future.

What Does it Mean to Have a Litigated Divorce?

If a divorce is contested, then it is known as a litigated situation. Basically, the spouses are in disagreement about how the issues should be resolved. A complaint is filed with the court to manage these disagreements, often relating to spousal support, child support, property division, and more.

When one spouse files the court complaint, it is a legal request for the court to determine the outcome of the divorce. Specific legal procedures are followed to determine how the marriage is ended and the details of this process.

Going through a litigated divorce often takes a year or more. It ends with a trial where a family court judge makes the decisions based on the information provided by the couple. While each spouse has the option to represent themselves in court, it’s usually best to hire a divorce attorney to navigate the situation.

Divorce Mediation: An Alternative to Litigation

It’s no surprise that going through court for divorce can be a lengthy and expensive process. Court battles are not only stressful, but the legal costs start to add up over time. An alternative is to find a resolution through mediation. With this method, the couple hires a mediator – which can happen without any court filings or proceedings.

A mediator doesn’t determine the outcome of the divorce. Instead, the goal is to work with the couple to find a compromise. The purpose of mediation is to find an agreement, then the legal paperwork can be filed as an uncontested divorce.

Do You Need Mediation or Litigation?

Each situation is unique, which is why it’s helpful to consult with an experienced family law attorney. Reach out to our experienced team at Miles & Hatcher, LLP to determine the best way to move forward with your divorce: (909) 481-4080.


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