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Kyle Whitaker Blog

Is Litigation Necessary to Complete Your Divorce?

Most divorce cases do not go to trial; after attending mediation, most couples are able to finalize a marital settlement agreement and complete their divorce.

The percentage of legal disputes that go to trial is low; this applies in many areas of the law, from criminal cases to personal injury lawsuits. It is also true of divorce cases. This news should be reassuring, whether your goal is to move past your divorce with as little conflict as possible, whether you are worried about how much it will cost to prepare for a trial in your divorce case, or whether it fills you with dread to think of how much alimony the court will order you to pay if a judge is the one to decide. In other words, most of the decisions in a divorce belong to the couple themselves. Of course, if it were that easy for you and your spouse to make decisions together, you would not be getting divorced. The Fort Worth divorce lawyers at the Law Office of Kyle Whitaker can help you negotiate with your spouse and finalize your divorce without litigation.

How Can You Tell Whether Your Divorce Case Will Need to Go to Trial?

The family courts of Texas require all couples seeking a contested divorce to go through mediation before the court will schedule a trial date for divorce, and the vast majority of them end up agreeing on all the terms of their divorce by the time they are finished with mediation. A contested divorce is one where the requests that one spouse makes in the divorce petition differ at least slightly from the ones the other spouse lists in their response to the divorce petition.

Most mediation sessions last only one day, even though it is a full day of negotiations. By the end of one day of mediation, you will know whether you are well on your way to finalizing a marital settlement agreement or whether you have reached an impasse. (Once you have finalized the MSA, the divorce is almost finished; the judge must issue a court order finalizing your divorce.) If you are getting nowhere in mediation, you will probably need to go to trial.

If Your Case Does Not Go to Trial, Do You Still Need a Lawyer?

It makes sense to approach divorce mediation as a business negotiation. If you were engaging in business negotiations that would affect the rest of your life, you would hire a lawyer. When you let your lawyer speak for you in mediation, you do not risk letting your emotions get in the way or rehashing the same old arguments that you and your spouse have been having for years.

Contact the Fort Worth TX Law Office of Kyle Whitaker About Divorce Without Litigation

A family law attorney can help if you finalize your divorce in a way that avoids as much stress and expense as possible. Contact the Law Office of Kyle Whitaker in Fort Worth, Texas to discuss your case.