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Should you litigate or negotiate your divorce?

| Feb 4, 2021 | Divorce Process |

When Arizona couples decide to end their marriages, anger, sadness and other intense emotions often overwhelm practical decision-making on how to proceed.

When a relationship becomes contentious, it’s not unusual to want to have your day in court, especially if you’ve been dealing with an unfaithful or neglectful spouse.

Consider these factors before deciding to settle or go to court

While each family is different, most parents want to make the process as easy as possible for their children. Fewer than 10% of all divorces end up in front of a judge, but ask yourself the following questions before deciding what’s best for you:

  • How long will my divorce take?: In most cases, settlements take a few months, while trials can take well over a year as you are at the mercy of the court’s schedule.
  • How much will it cost?: The longer your divorce takes, the more you will pay. Statistics show trials average $15,000 to $40,000 in the U.S., but it depends upon your circumstances. Settlements usually cost a few thousand dollars.
  • How much stress can I take?: Trials are, by nature, combative, and those negative feelings can linger for a long time affecting a couple’s post-divorce parenting relationship. Settlements involve both parties working together, which eases stress and even creates a model for handling parenting disputes later on.
  • How do I achieve the best result?: This factor is often the only one where litigation makes sense, especially if your spouse makes unreasonable demands over dividing assets and parenting time with your kids.

Putting reason ahead of emotion

While no one relishes the thought of a bitter and lengthy divorce, sometimes it’s necessary to go to court. That’s why it’s advisable to work with an experienced family law attorney.

A knowledgeable lawyer understands judges demand fact-based arguments over why you deserve a greater share of marital assets or more time with your kids. They don’t want to hear about grievances between spouses.

It’s vital to your future well-being to work with someone who can help you find an equitable outcome, regardless of whether that’s achieved by working together with your soon-to-be-ex or going in front of a judge.