What happens with a divorcing couple cannot agree to terms on topics such as child support, property division, and spousal support? If mediation has been exhausted or simply was not an option by one of the spouses, a contested divorce is the next step. However, even though it is a contested divorce, there are still things that can be done to keep costs to a minimum, benefiting everyone involved.
The “best” divorce cases, if there is such as thing, generally happen when the couple simply grows apart or realizes they got married too young and either they or their spouse has developed into a different person that wants different things now. In many of these cases, an amicable divorce is possible, saving both individuals a lot of time, money, and heartache.
In cases where a cheating spouse or abuse is involved, however, the outcome is not so easy. In cases such as this, one party will often want to “stick it” to the other party and look to get everything he or she can out of the divorce. In all likelihood, the process will be started when one party secures the services of a divorce attorney to create, file, and serve divorce papers to his or her spouse.
Once the papers are received, the other spouse will more than likely hire his or her own attorney. While there might be some attempt at a quick settlement, divorces such as this will often end up in court. During this pre-trial phase, each attorney will file motions for their client. In addition, there is usually some type of mediation taking place simply to find some points that the couple can agree upon prior to going to court.
Prior to the court date, you will work with your attorney to gather a witness list as well as any evidence needed to present your case. Once the case goes to trial, each side presents its case in front of a judge. After each spouse presents their case, the attorneys will give their closing arguments and await the verdict of the court.
Divorces are never easy or pleasant, but this is especially true in a contested divorce. Both parties are usually forced to live through the circumstances and emotions that brought the marriage to an end, which is never easy, and someone always feels jilted by the verdict. However, if you are not happy with the outcome and for some reason did not secure the services of a family lawyer, you can appeal the decision with the assistance of your attorney.