Although litigation is usually the most common way that couples choose to divorce, there are other options like mediation or collaborative divorce that might be a better option for you. The truth is, there isn’t a “one size fits all” option when it comes to divorce, and every divorce case is different. In this blog, we explain when litigation is a good option and what you can expect to encounter throughout the litigation process.
The Truth About Litigation
A lot of people assume that litigating a divorce means that they will have to end up inside of a courtroom. However, more than 95% of litigated divorces end up being settled out of court. Most couples choose litigation because their divorce is unilateral. This means that one spouse wishes to get divorced but the other does not. Because couples in a unilateral divorcee usually disagree on the terms of their divorce, these cases often become contentious and emotionally charged.
There are also other options that couples might try before litigation, such as mediation or collaborative divorce. However, if these options don’t work, litigation is usually the next step. Below are the hotly contested issues that are often disputed in litigation:
Although litigation can be combative at times, an experienced lawyer can make sure your approach doesn’t prolong your emotional pain or substantially increase your legal fees. A skilled attorney can tell you which disputes to negotiate and which ones to fight back against. This can help you and your spouse reach a compromise and potentially keep your divorce case from ending up in court.
What Should I Expect During Litigation?
If your case makes it to court, litigation will be required to reach a resolution for the issues you and your spouse can’t come to an agreement on. Sometimes there might be only one issue that needs to be resolved, while other times there might be multiple issues that need to be hammered out by your attorney.
During litigation in court, the attorney of each spouse will present evidence for their side of the case. Evidence that might be used by your attorney can include witness testimony or written statements, bank statements, tax returns, life insurance policies, etc. A judge will review the evidence presented by the attorneys and declare your divorce orders.
Having to litigate your case in court might be risky because the judge doesn’t know very much about you, your family, and your finances. Their decision will impact you for the rest of your life, which is a big risk for both spouses. Because of this factor, you should consult with an experienced divorce attorney to determine which legal route is best for your particular situation.
Do you need help with your divorce case? Contact our Annapolis family law attorney to schedule your free case consultation today.