Divorce is never easy. But it can be amicable.
Thanks to TV shows like Divorce Court, the popular assumption is that divorce is a bitter war over who gets the kids, the home, and the lion’s share of the marital estate. While some divorces unfold in this manner, many more are settled out of court on amicable terms.
An amicable divorce is the preferred way to end a marriage because it is less stressful for the entire family, costs less than litigation, and is over relatively quickly. If you and your spouse have decided that you’re better off apart, these four tips can improve your chances of having an amicable divorce.
- Avoid the Blame Game
Blame is the quickest way to put someone else on the defensive. Once the decision is made to divorce, try to treat the reasons as immaterial. It no longer matters that your spouse was more committed to their job than the relationship or that they started taking you for granted. Instead of blaming them for past issues, focus on what is most important, such as the best interests of the children.
- Keep Emotions Out of It
While divorce can be an emotional experience, letting anger or sadness dictate your decisions can lead to resentment and conflict. When you are discussing the division of the marital estate, coming up with a parenting plan, or approaching the topic of spousal support, focus on being calm. A respectful tone and approach will make your spouse more receptive to your needs and concerns and help you arrive at solutions together.
- Consider Collaborative Divorce
Collaborative divorce is a process in which each spouse is represented by a specially trained collaborative law attorney and agrees to negotiate the terms of the divorce without resorting to litigation. Both sides are committed to achieving a respectful resolution in emotionally safe surroundings.
Unlike litigated divorce, which becomes part of the public record, collaborative proceedings are confidential, so there is no chance of anyone finding out the final terms of your divorce or discovering personal details about your children.
- Consider Mediation
Sometimes you and your spouse may reach an impasse despite your best intentions. Perhaps you disagree on part of the parenting plan or both of you want the same marital asset. In situations like this, divorce mediation can help you avoid litigation and keep things amicable.
With mediation, you and your spouse hire a mediator, a neutral third party who will work with you to reach an agreement. He or she offers an unbiased viewpoint, and mediators who are also attorneys can use their knowledge of family law to help you both reach consensus more quickly.
Spouses who commit to keeping things amicable benefit themselves and their children. They may no longer be married but they will always be co-parents, and ending the marital relationship on civil terms is the best outcome for all involved. The family law attorneys at Haas & Associates are trained and experienced in both regular and alternative divorce procedures and can guide you towards a settlement that is fair and acceptable to both sides. To schedule a consultation, contact us or call (919) 783-9669 today.