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Not all divorce cases need litigation

Deciding to end a marriage might be one of the most important decisions a New Jersey spouse might have to make, especially if there are children involved. A divorce comes with many changes that will impact the individual legally, emotionally and financially. One of the many questions a person might have is whether it will be necessary to personally appear in court. Does the legal process involve a trial with evidence and witnesses?

Each divorce is unique, and the circumstances of each case determine whether court appearances will be necessary. If there are contentious issues that the couple cannot resolve themselves, they may need the court to decide them. These matters typically include issues about children, including child custody and visitation or parenting plans. Couples with extensive real estate assets may have difficulty dividing the marital property, and if one spouse was not working for some time, the court might be inclined to order spousal support.

There are other options. One alternative to litigation involves an impartial mediator that provides a platform for a divorcing couple to negotiate through communication and compromise. This option is typically less costly and less time consuming. Once issues are resolved, and a final agreement is reached, it can be presented to the court for final approval. As long as the terms of the agreement are fair, the court will usually sign off on it.

Divorce is typically a traumatizing experience for any person, but it is not necessary to go through it without the guidance of an experienced family law attorney. A skilled New Jersey lawyer can assess the unique circumstances of the client and explain the suitable options. If mediation is chosen, each spouse may have legal counsel present, and if litigation is the appropriate choice, the attorney will provide support throughout the proceedings.

Source: Findlaw, "Do You Have to Go to Court for a Divorce?", Christopher Coble, Oct. 4, 2016

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