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Should you negotiate your divorce or settle in court?

On Behalf of | Dec 4, 2020 | Divorce |

Every divorce is different as illustrated by the option of either negotiating with your soon-to-be-ex or settling in court where a judge makes the decisions. 

There are drawbacks and benefits to each option. Here are four points to consider. 

Time investment

In the state of Kentucky, a divorce in court normally takes between 60 and 90 days. If there are significant assets, it may take a good deal longer. Remember that the timing of your divorce will depend on the court calendar, which is often backed up. This may mean weeks or even months of waiting. Negotiation is usually a shorter path to divorce. 

Financial issues

If you decide on litigation, keep in mind that the related financial issues include attorney fees, court costs and related expenses. These can escalate quickly. It is not unusual for the cost of a divorce to reach five or even six figures; if, for example, the process becomes mired in disagreements over the division of major assets. As the shorter option, negotiation is often considerably less expensive than litigation. 

Stress factor

One of the biggest issues for families is the stress associated with having to appear in court. A traditional divorce process can become contentious, raising stress levels considerably. Studies find that a bitter court battle can adversely affect the children of a marriage. They fare better in a post-divorce world if their parents set an example of calm, respectful teamwork in divorce negotiation. 

Litigation rationale

If you believe that you and your spouse can work together, negotiation has advantages you may find appealing. However, if the two of you disagree on major points and you feel that settlement negotiations are not in your best interests, the solution may be litigation.