Five Things You Can Do Right Now To Speed Up Your Divorce
Often I am asked how a litigant can speed up their divorce. Tensions and emotions mount as a case drags on and there seems to be no end in sight. Understand that the divorce process is just that –- a “process.” It is not a free-for-all but rather is controlled by rules and directives to facilitate the heavy volume of cases that continuously flow through the court.
Once a divorce complaint is filed and the other party responds and joins the case, the case is essentially on the court’s radar and you are now in the “process.” Each case is placed on a track, i.e. standard, complex, etc. and discovery deadlines are set. During the process, the parties will be ordered to attend certain alternative dispute resolution events to assist them in reaching a settlement. The goal is to be able to resolve your issues and enter into a Marital Settlement Agreement. Essentially, litigants are subject to the process only for so long as they cannot agree. It’s really that simple. Here are my top five tips to help you get to the finish line sooner.
Stop Being Unreasonable. Yes, I said it. The biggest hindrance in any divorce is because one or both litigants is being unreasonable. Listen to your attorney. While you may have never been through the divorce process before, they have! Divorce attorneys live this process day in and day out. They know what works and what does not. If they tell you that you are being unreasonable, you should be guided by their advice.
Ask for a Four-Way Conference. The four-way is a very useful settlement tool even if a couple of these meetings wind up being like The Jerry Springer Show. Air it out so that you can reach the middle ground, settle your issues, and move on.
Make a list of what you can live with and what you cannot. Make sure for that for every “want” you write down a “want not.” Then when you feel yourself digging your heels in, go back and reevaluate your list.
Talk to Your Spouse. Why should you? Because if you don’t, then your lives will be decided by a Judge. Enough said on that point. Remember that you once cared enough about one other to make a life together. Put your emotions in a box and shelve them long enough to unravel the economic and non-economic aspects of your marriage.
Go to Individual Counseling. I cannot stress this point enough. We are flawed beings and can stand to fix a few things about ourselves. There’s a lot to be said about self-examination. Let a professional help you own your part in the demise of your marriage and how to cope with your circumstances post-divorce.
Call me or visit us on the web at njfamilylawdivorce.com to schedule your free 30-minute in-depth consultation. I am here to help you get through this very difficult process and come out on top.