Resolving Your Disagreements in Court
In every divorce, there are many issues that must be resolved, including child custody and child support (if children are involved), spousal support, and the division of marital assets. While some parties are able to reach agreements in these matters amicably, others have a hard time resolving their differences and working out a settlement. When there are irresolvable disputes or a spouse disagrees with the divorce, it is called a contested divorce.
Contested divorces can be extremely difficult for the entire family. Spouses who are constantly engaged in bickering, fighting, and name calling often experience a great deal of stress and emotional turmoil that seeps into their everyday life and the lives of their children.
When You Can't Come to an Agreement
Contested divorces are often the most common types of divorce, as it is very rare that two former spouses can reach amicable agreements on all terms of their divorce settlement. If you decide to take your divorce to court, however, this does not mean that mediation cannot be utilized—and similarly, if entering into an uncontested divorce, if the spouses cannot reach an agreement, the divorce may become contested.
Many times, it is much too difficult to decide the terms of things like a child custody arrangement and child support without the interference of the court system, but it is not impossible. In short, legal representation in a contested divorce can be critical to the outcome of your case.
During a contested divorce, our team can:
- Help you understand your rights
- Safeguard your interests
- Complete whatever paperwork is necessary
- Make sure you know what you are legally entitled to
- Communicate with your ex-spouse or ex-spouse's attorney
- Protect your rights
- Fight for a fair and just settlement
Is Marriage Counseling Required Before Divorce?
According to California Family Code § 1830, while it is not required, some courts may decide that couples will need to attend mandatory mediation or counseling sessions before they go through with divorce. This is only true in cases where there is controversy over custody, visitation and the like when there is a minor child involved. Divorce causes a "disruption to the household," to borrow from the law, which is why the court may decide that you would benefit from mediation services before following through with a court battle.
All California counties are different. For example, in Los Angeles County, couples seeking divorce are required to go through the PACT education program which stands for "planning, access, care and treatment." To find out conclusively whether or not mediation might be required before you go to court for divorce, you should contact a family lawyer. Our firm pledges to keep you informed every step of the process.
If you need a contested divorce attorney, contact our legal team for a free evaluation of your case!