Many divorces are not litigated in court. Instead, the couple works together using mediation to draft the divorce agreement and resolve all areas of dispute. It is usually faster, less expensive, private, and less stressful. The big presumption in this process is that the couple works together to find a fair and equitable solution. This, however, is not always the case.
Sometimes the only way to protect personal interests and parental rights is to litigate the divorce in front of a judge.
Common reasons for litigation
Each divorce has specific issues and unique challenges, but some common reasons include:
- Uncooperative spouses: The relationship is damaged to the point where the couple cannot have a civil discourse even through their lawyers.
- Unreasonable spouse: Some seem intent to seeking vengeance, demanding assets or refusing to share custody of the children.
- Complicated estates: There often are disputes over the value of assets like businesses, art or property where a judge will need to rule after hearing from attorneys and expert witnesses.
- Refuses to divorce: One spouse may refuse to believe the marriage is over or grant the divorce, perhaps for religious reasons. It can make them uncooperative.
- Abuse: The court is always involved when there are allegations of abuse. The court’s presence ensures that accusations are investigated.
Not all attorneys want to litigate
Each attorney has their own approach and specialization. If there is a potential for serious dispute and a likelihood of litigation, it usually makes sense to work with a family law attorney who is comfortable with litigation. This helps protect your best interests and rights to the full extent of the law.