Going through the breakup of a marriage can be a painful and complicated process. Regardless of the amount of assets and property the couple has or the issues involved in their case, any divorce can also get expensive.
Fortunately, there is such a thing as an affordable divorce in California. Our San Diego divorce attorneys can help you explore the legal options available that allow divorcing couples to dissolve their marriages with as little expense and stress as possible.
Two key factors that will help facilitate the process are the ability to communicate with your spouse and the ability to negotiate agreements whenever possible. Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) can help you achieve this goal.
Options for Affordable Divorce in California
Depending on the circumstances surrounding your marriage, issues relating to property division, child custody and support, and any potential alimony payments will need to be addressed during your divorce proceedings.
Even in cases in which there are no children or extensive assets involved, difficulties in communication between you and your spouse can make achieving a divorce settlement a long and drawn-out process.
Extensive testimony may be required from both parties if legal motions are filed, and you could find yourself having to appear at numerous court hearings until these issues are resolved. All of this runs up your legal costs.
Alternative dispute resolution can provide a more affordable option for divorce in California. The following are two ways in which ADR may be used.
Mediation can be used to negotiate child custody matters and financial or property settlements. During mediation, you and your spouse will meet with an impartial third party, often a retired judge. You can expect your mediator to do the following:
- To listen to both sides and remain neutral
- To keep any information disclosed confidential
- To guide you in exploring options for settling disagreements
- To help you in negotiating settlements that are in your mutual best interests
You are not required to come to any agreements during mediation, and the mediator will not make decisions on your behalf. In the event that you and your spouse are able to negotiate a settlement, the mediator may provide the court with a written agreement.
Even if you decide to use the mediation process, an experienced family law attorney is essential. A Certified Family Law Specialist can help you navigate the nuances of your individual case and the mediation process.
In San Diego, settlement conferences are another form of ADR commonly used to resolve divorce-related disputes. They involve having a family law attorney appointed by the court assess areas of contention in your divorce.
The settlement conference will be attended by you, your spouse, and both of your attorneys, and is often mandated by the presiding judge in your case in the event that efforts at settlement have failed. It provides a way to voluntarily resolve at least some or all of your disputes without having to undergo a time-consuming and costly trial.
Exploring Affordable Divorce With Denham & Britt, LLP
Denham & Britt, LLP exclusively handles family law cases in San Diego County. We are Certified Family Law Specialists with years of expertise in divorce, child support, child custody, and spousal support.
Contact Denham & Britt to set up a free consultation about your family law case. Talk with attorneys Donna Denham and Jennifer Britt to learn how you can find a peaceful resolution to your family dispute.