Alternative Dispute Resolution Options in Divorce

There are two main types of alternative dispute resolution options for divorcing spouses:

  • Divorce mediation involves a qualified and impartial third-party mediator to facilitate negotiations and encourage communication and compromise. A mediator may not provide legal advice, but each party’s legal counsel may be present to provide legal and moral support.
  • Collaboration is a process that takes place between the two spouses in formal settings with the aim to draft a divorce settlement.

What happens after successful negotiations?

In most cases, couples manage to reach agreements on all their contentious issues by using an  alternative dispute resolution method for their divorce. If you and your soon-to-be-ex are able to do that, a final settlement agreement can be drafted that details the decisions made during negotiations. This can be presented to the judge, and unless it shows obvious favor for one of you, the court will approve the settlement.

The judge will then issue a divorce decree to finalize the divorce and to show the resolutions reached on the main issues. The document will further detail the rights and obligations, which may include how all the marital assets are to be distributed, visitation and future living arrangements for any children involved, and any details related to spousal and child support.




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