What do judges search for in kid custody cases? – Solent Family Mediation

Family mediation

During mediation an independent, professionally trained arbitrator helps you and your ex-partner exercise an agreement about problems such as:

arrangements for kids after you separate (sometimes called residence or contact);.

  • kid upkeep payments.
  • financial resources (for instance, what to do with your home, savings, pension, financial obligations)

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The Four Divorce Alternatives

Divorce mediation

No 2 marriages are the same, therefore it only follows that no 2 divorces will be the same, either.

If you’re a female who’s pondering divorce, you have several alternatives about how to continue. In general terms, you require to think about 4 broad categories of divorce options: Do-It-Yourself (DIY), Mediation, Collaborative and Lawsuits. Let’s have a look at the advantages and disadvantages of each one.

Do-It-Yourself Divorce

The very best recommendations I can give you about Do-It-Yourself Divorce, is DON’T Do-It-Yourself!

Divorce is very made complex, both lawfully and economically. You can easily make mistakes, and often those errors are permanent. The only scenario I can envision when a Diy divorce might make any possible sense, might be in a case where the marital relationship lasted only two or 3 years and there are no kids, little or no assets/debts to be divided, equivalent incomes and no spousal support. In a case like that, a Diy divorce could be achieved rather quickly and inexpensively. However, I would still highly advise that each celebration have their own separate lawyer review the final documents.


In divorce mediation, a separating couple deals with a neutral conciliator who helps both celebrations concern a contract on all aspects of their divorce. The mediator may or may not be a lawyer, however he/she should be very fluent in divorce and family law. In addition, it is important for the mediator to be neutral and not advocate for either party. Both celebrations still need to speak with their own, specific attorneys during the mediation and prior to signing the last divorce settlement arrangement.

Here are a couple of benefits and drawbacks to consider prior to deciding if mediation will work for you.

On the “pro” side, divorce mediation might:

  • Lead to a better long-lasting relationship with your ex-husband considering that you will not “battle” in court.
  • Be simpler on children given that the divorce proceedings may be more peaceful.
  • Speed up an arrangement.
  • Reduce expenses.
  • Help you stay in control of your divorce because you are making the decisions (and the court isn’t).
  • Permit more discretion. Mediation is private; prosecuted divorce is public.

On the “con” side, divorce mediation might:

  • Lose time and money. If negotiations fail, you’ll require to begin all over.
  • Be insufficient or unduly favorable to one spouse. If the conciliator is unskilled or biased towards your partner, the outcome could be undesirable for you.
  • Lead to an unenforceable contract. A mediation agreement that’s uneven or inadequately drafted can be challenged.
  • Result in legal issues. Any problem of law will still need to be ruled upon by the court.
  • Fail to discover certain assets. Because all financial information is voluntarily revealed and there is no subpoena of records, your spouse could possibly hide assets/income.
  • Enhance unhealthy behavior patterns. If one partner is dominating and the other is submissive, the last settlement might not be fair.
  • Fuel feelings. Mediation could increase unfavorable behavior of a spouse with a propensity for physical/mental or drugs/alcohol abuse.

Couples typically hear about the wonders of mediation and how it is reportedly a better, less contentious, less expensive and more “dignified” method to get a divorce. My greatest problem with mediation is that the sole role and goal of the arbitrator is to get the celebrations to come to an agreement– any arrangement! Keep in mind, the conciliator can not offer any guidance. All they can do is attempt to get you to agree. Sadly, not all contracts are great agreements, and in fact, in most cases, no contract is much better than a bad agreement. So unless both celebrations can be fairly affordable and amicable (and if they can be, why are they getting divorced???), I believe that mediation is normally not a practical choice for the majority of females.

Collective Divorce

Simply put, collective divorce happens when a couple consents to exercise a divorce settlement without going to court.

Throughout a collaborative divorce both you and your husband will each work with an attorney who has actually been trained in the collective divorce procedure. The role of the lawyers in a collaborative divorce is quite different than in a traditional divorce.

In the collaborative procedure, you, your other half and your respective lawyers all should sign a contract that needs that both lawyers withdraw from the case if a settlement is not reached and/or if lawsuits is threatened. If this occurs, both you and your hubby must start all over once again and find brand-new lawyers. Neither celebration can use the exact same attorneys again!

Even if the collective procedure is successful, you will normally need to appear in family court so a judge can sign the agreement. However the legal process can be much quicker and cheaper than traditional lawsuits if the collective procedure works.

However, I have actually found that the collaborative approach typically doesn’t work well to settle divorces including complex financial circumstances or when there are significant properties. In collaborative divorce, just as in mediation, all financial info (earnings, assets and liabilities) is disclosed willingly. What’s more, numerous high net worth divorces involve organizations and professional practices where it is fairly simple to conceal possessions and income.

So … as a general rule, my recommendation is this:

Do NOT use any of these very first three options– Do-It-Yourself Divorce, Mediation or Collaborative Divorce– if:

  • You believe your partner is concealing assets/income.
  • Your husband is prideful, and you have problem speaking up or you hesitate to voice your viewpoints.
  • There is a history or danger of domestic violence (physical and/or mental) towards you and/or your kids.
  • You or your hubby has a drug/alcohol addiction.

Litigated Divorce

The fourth divorce choice is the most typical. Nowadays, the majority of separating couples choose the “standard” model of prosecuted divorce.

Keep in mind, though, “prosecuted” does not indicate the divorce ends up in court. The vast majority of all divorce cases (more than 95 percent) reach an out-of-court settlement arrangement. “Litigation” is a legal term meaning ‘carrying out a claim.’

In 80 percent of cases, the choice to divorce is unilateral– one party wants the divorce and the other does not. That, by its very nature, develops an adversarial situation right from the start and typically disqualifies mediation and collective divorce, since both approaches rely on the full cooperation of both parties and the voluntary disclosure of all financial information.

Plainly, if you are starting with an adversarial and extremely emotionally charged circumstance, the opportunities are extremely high that partnership or mediation might fail. Why take the risk of going those paths when chances are they might fail, squandering your money and time?

The most crucial and most hard parts of any divorce are pertaining to an agreement on kid custody, division of possessions and liabilities and alimony payments (how much and for the length of time). You desire your attorney to be an extremely skilled negotiator, you don’t desire somebody who is extremely combative, ready to fight over anything and everything. An extremely contentious method will not only prolong the pain and significantly increase your legal charges, it will likewise be emotionally damaging to everyone included, specifically the kids.

Keep in mind: Many divorce lawyers (or at least the ones I would advise) will always aim to come to an affordable settlement with the other party. If they can’t come to an affordable settlement or if the other celebration is totally unreasonable then, sadly, going to court, or threatening to do so, may be the only method to resolve these problems.

If you have actually tried everything else, and you do wind up in court, things can get actually nasty and hostile. Up till that point both attorneys were “negotiators,” attempting to get the celebrations to compromise and come to some affordable resolution. Once in court, the role of each attorney changes. Negotiations and compromise move to the back burner. Their new task is to “win” and get the very best possible outcome for their customer.

And do not forget, when you remain in court, it’s a judge who knows very little about you and your family that will make the final decisions about your children, your residential or commercial property, your cash and how you live your life. That’s a huge threat for both celebrations to take– and that’s also why the threat of going to court is usually such an excellent deterrent.

Here’s my last word of advice about divorce options: Weigh divorce options carefully. If you have doubts, it is good to be all set with “Plan B” which would be the litigated divorce.

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