When considering divorce, couples have the option of choosing one of three different dispute resolution methods to achieve a settlement.
Their choice typically depends on their own unique circumstances and goals.
If you are considering leaving your spouse, contact a divorce dispute resolution lawyer at Twyford Law Office and find out more information regarding which course of action will be right for you and your family.
Call (509) 327 0777 or reach us online and schedule a free consultation.
Our services are client-centered, and we make a determined effort to accommodate the unique needs and situations of each client.
We provide skilled representation that is prepared for mediation, or litigation if necessary.
Due to over 40 years of experience, we are able to offer creative solutions in order to accomplish our clients’ goals.
Types of Divorce Dispute Resolution
Each method of dispute resolution can address and solve the various family matters surrounding divorce, including child custody, child and spousal support, and the valuation and division of property. The difference between them is in their approach and their unique benefits.
Mediation is a voluntary approach, which allows couples to make joint decisions on a settlement. A professional mediator facilitates the discussions as a neutral third party and does not give any advice or make decisions. However, the mediator is able to make suggestions on how issues can be resolved.
During the mediation process, joint sessions are held with the mediator in order to identify issues, determine the parties’ positions, and work towards an amicable solution. The spouses may each choose to retain and have an attorney present. The involvement of other professionals may be required as well, such as a forensic accountant. This is especially true in complex high-asset divorces.
The spouses can make their own decisions as to what works best for their family, instead of having a judge decide.
The couple can choose the schedule and set their own pace.
The discussions are confidential and are not entered into public record.
The couple does not have to go to court.
A collaborative approach to divorce allows couples to resolve their disputes amicably and privately, rather than in the courtroom. There are three basic principles that collaborative practice is based on:
The couple and their respective attorneys sign a participation agreement, pledging to not go to court.
It is an honest and respectful exchange of information, and not meant for casting blame or making accusations.
The needs of each spouse, as well as their children, are taken into account when coming up with solutions.
The ultimate goal is to achieve a mutually acceptable settlement between the spouses without dishonesty and any threat of legal proceedings. The couple may choose to also hire a collaborative team, consisting of a child specialist, financial planner, and/or a divorce coach, who can assist with problem-solving. If the process does fail or if one party is not being honest, the attorneys must withdraw in order to protect the confidentiality of the collaborative meetings.
Spouses are in complete control over the proceedings.
There is an incentive for both parties to settle their case collaboratively, so they may avoid having to hire new attorneys and begin a traditional divorce
The needs of children are prioritized and they are exposed to less trauma.
Proceedings are confidential.
Solutions are mutually beneficial.
It almost always costs less than a traditional divorce.
In litigation or a traditional divorce, each party hires their own attorney to represent them in court. This type of dispute resolution is most often chosen when parties cannot reach an amicable agreement. Prior to the proceedings, each attorney gathers information and documentation from their client and then makes a formal or informal request to the other attorney for their information and documentation. That may include copies of bank statements, tax returns, monthly bills, credit card statements, and valuations on real estate and businesses.
Real estate, business, and pension evaluation are often necessary. Copies of bank statements, credit card statements, tax returns, and monthly bills are also provided so that each spouse can present their true financial picture. During the trial, the dispute resolution attorneys each present evidence and witnesses that are in support of their client’s requests. The judge then issues a verdict and if either party is unsatisfied with the result, they have the option of filing an appeal. The benefits of litigation do not outweigh alternative dispute resolution methods, as the costs are higher. However, it may be the only choice when couples cannot agree on issues or if one party is being unreasonable.
Contact a Divorce Lawyer in Spokane
Before you begin the divorce process, discuss your legal options with and have one of our Washington divorce dispute resolution attorneys evaluate your case. We offer free consultations; call (509) 327-0777 today.