Divorce litigation can be lengthy and expensive. Court and attorney fees are high and waiting for a hearing can take months. Additionally, court ordered divorce settlements often end up being all-or-nothing arrangements that skew in favor of one party or the other.
For divorcing couples who are still able and willing to work together, litigation alternatives such as settlement, mediation, or collaborative divorce can provide a means of avoiding the drawbacks of divorce litigation. These methods take place outside of court, which means the parties avoid paying court fees and can schedule negotiation sessions that work for them.
It also means that the substance of negotiations remain private rather than entering the public record in a court proceeding. Divorce settlement and mediation allows divorcing spouses to work out mutually beneficial resolutions to the many issues that accompany divorce, such as property distribution, maintenance, and custody of children.
But even cordial negotiations are still adversarial to some degree. Each party has goals that they are trying to achieve and not everyone can have everything they want. Being successful in a divorce negotiation requires a firm grasp of the law and knowledge of how the circumstances influence what you can realistically expect to receive.
Experienced divorce attorneys know how to conduct negotiations and mediation—how and when to push the other party to get what their clients want. These skills are essential to successful dispute resolution. At the same time, you need skilled, aggressive advocacy when negotiations break down and you find yourself in divorce court.