In the modern world, couples considering divorce are increasingly aware that the process does not have to be a long, draining experience if both parties agree to end their marriage amicably. While this is almost always easier said than done, it is true that divorce does not have to be full of frustrating conflicts. If keeping the process civil is a priority to a couple, approach it with this goal in mind.
For many divorcing couples, this means filing their divorce uncontested. This is often a good fit for those who simply want to put an end to a particular chapter in their lives and move on, or who hope to keep their private lives out of the public eye.
However, uncontested divorce is not always the wisest approach in the long run, even for those who wish to remain civil. In some cases, the streamlined filing process it offers does not fully address key issues. Those who have complex assets or complicated custody concerns may need to examine their legal options closely before moving forward.
One of the biggest drawbacks to filing divorce uncontested is that it requires both spouses to agree on delicate issues without going through the traditional negotiation process used in contested divorce. While this is potentially useful, it often puts the children of a divorcing couple in a precarious position.
Child custody is, for most parents, the most difficult aspect of a divorce. It is rarely simple to determine how to share parenting privileges and responsibilities while keeping the needs and best interests of the child at the center of the matter. If a couple chooses to file for uncontested divorce, they must create a custody plan and parenting agreement that a court approves, but in many cases the outcome does not serve all parties fairly.
Many parents who choose to put together their custody plan on their own to save legal expenses and court costs may not realize that they are giving away parental rights and privileges simply because they did not have individual legal counsel guiding them.
While it is often possible to file for uncontested divorce with children, this places a significant burden of responsibility on both parents to consider their options carefully while developing their custody and parenting plans. Rushing through this step creates many opportunities for conflict after the divorce finalizes, often at the expense of the child.
Avoiding unnecessary expenses during divorce is one of the primary reasons that many couples choose to file uncontested. This is a reasonable motivation, especially considering how expensive divorce can get when one side or the other refuses to settle the matter and move on. In general, the longer that the process lasts, the greater the expense.
However, when a couple has significant resources, as many do in Denver, choosing uncontested divorce is often impractical. Figuring out how to divide a savings account? Not too complicated. Determining a fair way to divide multiple pieces of real estate, personal property, retirement accounts and ownership in a business? Much more difficult.
In truth, the more a couple has, the more complicated it is to separate and move on in a fair way.
Protect yourself and the ones you love
Regardless of how much or little marital property you and your spouse have or the child custody issues you must address, a civil, respectful divorce is possible. Often, the most important aspect of achieving a respectful divorce is establishing a calm tone early on and communicating clearly with all parties that your divorce does not need to turn ugly.
Whether you choose to file uncontested or not, make sure to build yourself a strong divorce strategy that keeps your rights and priorities protected, allowing you to focus on your own needs and prepare for a new season of life.