Landers Firm PLC

Litigation or mediation: Choosing the right path for your divorce

Every divorce is different. Some couples spend months fighting in court over everything from child custody to which one of them gets the kitchen appliances. Other couples walk into court together, answer a few questions from the judge and walk out with a quick and easy divorce.

Your divorce will depend on your relationship. You and your spouse may be more suited to completing your divorce through mediation. If there is some contention, litigation may be a better option.

As a business owner, it is important that you take the appropriate steps to protect the company you have worked hard to build.

Before deciding on a course of action, take the time to weigh the pros and cons of each and figure out which method is right for you.

Mediation

Mediation involves you and your spouse working with a neutral third party to hash out your divorce agreement. For this process to be effective, the mediator must not advocate for either party. Neutrality is the key for mediations to succeed.

Even though mediation does not involve the court, you should still consult with an attorney during the process to ensure that the divorce settlement is reasonable and fair before you agree to it.

Mediation lets you avoid a court battle and usually results in a better long-term relationship with your ex. It is also easier on the kids, keeping them from feeling like they must choose a side. This method also gives you more control over the divorce. Instead of relying on a judge to make decisions for you, you and your ex are in the driver's seat.

Sometimes, mediation fails and you still end up litigating some issues. You also may end up with a settlement that favors your ex more than you. Another downside of mediation is that your ex might not fully disclose some information, especially concerning marital assets. This could result in you not receiving your fair share of property. Some assets could be withheld in order for your spouse to haggle for a share of your business, only to magically turn up if you acquiesce. Resist these urges.

Litigation

Litigation is the most common option for divorcing couples and typically viewed as the traditional method. However, litigation does not always mean you will end up in court. You can still settle out of court by having your respective lawyers negotiate the terms of the divorce agreement.

While litigation can often be the most effective method of divorce, it may lead to increased animosity between you and your ex.

No matter which way you go with your divorce, it is important you understand your options and take steps to ensure your company is protected from the collateral damage of a divorce. Contact a local Tennessee family law attorney for advice on handling your divorce and protecting your business assets.

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