Just as every relationship and marriage is unique, so too is every divorce. While some couples may choose to split amicably, with almost no signs of contention, others may struggle with hostility, arguments, and conflict. In some cases, people may be floored by the vengeful nature of their soon to be ex-spouse. Thankfully, there is a solution for every situation, and it is important to understand which divorce option may be best for you.
Mediation Versus Litigation
There are two basic ways to handle a divorce: mediation or litigation. Mediation (a common form of alternative dispute resolution) is a process in which the parties attempt to come to an agreement regarding the details of their divorce. A third-party mediator will work as a non-biased facilitator who will not make decisions for the spouses, but who will guide them toward reaching a compromise on any outstanding legal issues they need to address. While a mediator may help the parties understand how the law applies to their situation, they will typically not offer legal advice. For this reason, even when using mediation, you should hire your own divorce attorney who can explain your rights and ensure that your divorce settlement will meet your needs.
Litigation is the more “traditional” divorce route, as it involves the parties going to court and pleading their case before a judge. Both sides will have a chance to argue for why their wishes should be followed regarding issues such as property division or child custody. The judge will then make a ruling, determining how to resolve financial issues in a fair and equitable manner and deciding child-related issues based on what is in children’s best interests. Whatever the decision may be, each party must abide by the ruling. Either party may file an appeal if they believe that errors were made during the divorce trial that resulted in an unjust judgment.
Mediation for Amicable and High Asset Divorces
While almost any couple can use mediation in their divorce, those who are able to work together amicably are more likely to achieve a positive outcome. Mediation can also be beneficial for couples with a high net worth, since it will allow them to work together for their mutual benefit and reach a settlement that will provide for both parties’ ongoing needs. Parents who have minor children may use mediation because they want to spare their kids from the turmoil of a litigated divorce, and it can allow them to work together to set ground rules for how they will work together as co-parents once the divorce is complete.
Litigating in Contentious Situations or When Mediation Does Not Work
In the event that a couple cannot reach an agreement on some or all of the outstanding issues that need to be resolved, their divorce case will be heard in court. Litigation may also be needed if it is believed that one party is attempting to hide assets or has dissipated or wasted marital property. When litigating a divorce in the courtroom, it is crucial to have a seasoned divorce attorney who can protect your rights and interests and help you understand what needs to be done to achieve success in your case.
Contact a Naperville Family Law Attorney
If you are preparing for a divorce, it is imperative that you understand how to handle the process. At Mevorah Law Offices LLC, our skilled DuPage County divorce lawyers are here to help protect your interests. Whether you choose mediation or litigation, we can provide you with dedicated representation and help you reach a positive resolution to your divorce. To schedule a free consultation, call our office today at 630-932-9100.