People getting a divorce may understandably find the litigation process uncomfortable. While every case is different, some items that many divorcing couples find to be particularly important include their finances, assets, custody and visitation, retirement funds, child support, alimony, and living arrangements. Contested divorces are those which involve parties who cannot amicably agree on their marital problems.
Issues that commonly come up during contested divorces involve finances and children. Estranged couples may also wish to discern between and allocate marital property and non-marital property. For help with deciding these important matters, it is best to enlist the help of a well-versed Maryland contested divorce lawyer. An experienced divorce attorney could offer crucial legal guidance during court proceedings and alternative dispute resolution.
Children’s Best Interests in a Contested Case
The interests of children are protected in contested divorces in several ways. All involved parties should be concerned with the children’s wellbeing during their parents’ divorce, as state courts consider their best interests as the most important part of any family law case. However, if the children’s mental or physical health is at risk during a contested divorce, a skilled attorney may recommend a custody evaluation by a neutral third party in Maryland to assist the court in deciding an appropriate custodial arrangement.
Children in a divorce may receive a court-appointed best interest lawyer who can bring a case on behalf of a child and advise a judge on what is in their best interests. The tribunal finds this role substantially useful in deciding custody.
Court Attitudes toward Contested Divorces
Each judge treats a contested divorce case differently depending on individual facts and circumstances. However, most judges do not enjoy hearing contested divorce cases and typically urge parties to settle.
Although if necessary, a judge will hear the evidence and make a determination in that divorce case. Any parties that go through a contested divorce trial are more likely to come back to court again because one or both parties will likely be unhappy with the result, which may ultimately provoke more contested issues in the future.
Mediation, Arbitration, and Litigation in a Contested Divorce
Litigation involves filing a case, going to court, and participating in mediation and/or arbitration. These alternative dispute resolutions, which are typically required in contested cases, offer parties an opportunity to discuss temporary protective orders, alleged abuse, alcohol and drug addiction, and property division in a controlled setting. However, someone can go to mediation, settle all their issues, and never have to enter litigation.
Role of the Attorney
A divorce can be either contested or uncontested. Contested means that there are issues the parties cannot agree on. The role of an attorney would be to represent one party during litigation and assist them in resolving the matter outside of court.
Parties to an uncontested divorce can agree on their marital issues, and a lawyer’s role would entail drafting a separation agreement or marital property agreement. A steadfast lawyer in Maryland would also draft the appropriate paperwork to be filed in court and represent their party in hearings in order to get them through the contested separation.
Mitigating the Situation
Lawyers play an important role in contested divorces because they give legal advice and recommend to a claimant how they should proceed. Legal counsel can explain relevant laws to a plaintiff and how they affect their particular set of facts and circumstances. A claimant in a contested divorce may need to decide whether they should continue to fight and contest certain matters or whether they could benefit from a settlement. A local lawyer could explain either process, outline the costs of litigation, and represent a plaintiff during court hearings.
Call a Maryland Contested Divorce Attorney
Legal counsel can help alleviate tension and conflict in a contested case by advising a claimant about what is best for him or her. A Maryland contested divorce lawyer may also recommend mediation, alternative dispute resolution, and settlement to benefit an estranged spouse. Call today to learn which options may be available to you.