Is it possible to get a divorce without hiring a pricey lawyer?
Simply put, yes.
News outlets, television dramas, and blockbuster movies create a misconception that it’s impossible to get a divorce without hiring a fierce attorney. Media leads us to believe that you have to have an attorney to get a divorce, but in reality, there’s no law that requires you to hire one at any point in the divorce process.
With that being said, it is difficult to get through a divorce without any help. With money, children, and emotions at stake, it’s highly recommended to have third-party help smoothen the transaction.
So what should you do if you need guidance, but don’t want to go the lawyer route?
Visit a divorce counselor or mediator.
What is Divorce Mediation?
A mediator is a neutral third-party guide for couples looking to file an uncontested divorce. This non-adversarial alternative allows divorcees to end a marriage without hiring an attorney.
What is Divorce Counseling?
Counseling or therapy is available for couples looking to work through the emotional distress of a divorce together in order to dissolve the marriage in a rational and respective manner. Again, this is an alternative for uncoupling without a lawyer.
What Issues can Counseling and Mediation Solve?
Alimony is an emotionally charged aspect of the divorcing because it’s often a sign of times to come. Both men and women are eligible to receive alimony, which is financial assistance from an ex, to help them transition out of the marriage. Financial support is given both short and long-term to allow an ex to adjust to their new normal, so you can see why it’s a sensitive subject.
A divorce counselor or divorce mediator will allow you to determine:
- Who is entitled to receive financial assistance.
- When and how installments should be transferred.
- Circumstances of payment modification (ex: new job, injury).
There are very few guidelines available for alimony, leaving it up to the couples to determine financial support. The lack of structure makes it a more stressful and confusing process, making the need for a counselor or mediator higher.
Asset & Debt Division
Similar to Alimony, asset and debt division have few clear-cut rules, leaving many of the decisions in a judge’s hands. For many couples, this isn’t ideal. Understandably so. For those duos, seeking a divorce counselor or divorce mediator is the best option.
Trained third-party professionals help divorcees through the high-stakes negotiation process by giving unbiased recommendations. This person is able to create and equitable allocations of properties, holdings and debts that’s agreed upon by both parties.
Child Custody or Scheduling
Arguably the most important and prevalent reason for choosing and divorce counselor or divorce mediator is for the sake of the children. Child custody and scheduling issues discussed include, but are not limited to:
- Child support costs
- School-week nights
- School/extracurricular events
- Rules & punishments
Most couples move to separate household setups, so it’s critical that these issues are covered BEFORE officially uncoupling. As the child grows up and parents move on to new spouses or lifestyles, an established gameplan will ensure health, happiness, and focus. A counselor or mediator will be certain to create parenting plan best suited for the entire family.
Is a divorce counselor or divorce mediator the right choice for you?
If you’re reading this thinking, “I need that!” don’t hesitate to reach out to discuss your needs and questions. Divorce is one big negotiation, so it’s beyond beneficial to have someone with both parties interests in mind to find the best possible solution for everyone. To keep the process smooth and civil, set a meeting with a third-party ringleader before you officially take your rings off.