When people think about divorce, they often imagine dramatic courtroom outbursts, tabloid headlines and nasty allegations hurled by one or both sides. While this can certainly be the picture that's painted when it comes to celebrity divorces or particularly bitter splits, the fact is divorce doesn't have to be the horrific experience people often expect.
In fact, it is becoming more and more common for couples to pursue more amicable options when it comes to divorce. Perhaps this stems from the stigma of divorce no longer being what it once was or the fact that there are so many resources to help people pursue a more peaceful divorce. Whatever the reasons may be, you should understand that you have several options when it comes to avoiding contentious divorces.
Mediation can prove to be one particularly effective means of avoiding bitter conflict in your divorce. Through mediation, you and your soon-to-be ex can work with a mediator to resolve legal matters together.
Collaboration can also be an effective method of dispute resolution. Like mediation, collaboration focuses on giving divorcing spouses the power to make their own decisions about matters like property division and child custody. However, in collaborative divorces, two people work together, without a mediator and each with individual legal counsel.
Arbitration is another option that you may consider if you are looking to avoid the courtroom. However, this method does have elements that make it more similar to litigation. The process is more formal than the other options, and decisions (binding or not) will be made by an arbitrator, not the individuals involved.
Pursuing one of these alternative dispute resolution methods can help you avoid some of the cost, time and drama associated with litigation. However, it is still crucial that you take each of these options seriously and understand your rights as you work toward any legal resolution. Having an attorney by your side in any of these arenas can prove to be a wise decision.