The Amicable Divorce Process
We’ve been able to agree on a lot, but we’re not quite there. If I hire a lawyer, will it turn ugly?
Hiring a family law lawyer to help you figure out what is in your best interest does not mean you are gearing up for a fight. It’s simply a good decision to have experience on your side.
Why Should You Pursue an Amicable Divorce?
You already know that if you are going to get divorced, you are heading into an incredibly stressful time, and if at all possible, it’s good to try and handle this as amicably as possible. Why? First and foremost, it’s clearly best for your kids, and second, it’s better for your own health and well-being.
If you can limit your stress during your divorce by choosing an amicable divorce process, you will likely minimize the detrimental effects of divorce on you and your family. Researchers who published a study in the American Journal of Psychiatry have discovered that although both men and women suffer stress-related symptoms during and after divorce, their responses are somewhat different. According to research, women are more likely to experience depression after a contested divorce, while men experience depression during the divorce process itself.
In an Iowa State University study published by the Journal of Health and Social Behavior, researchers found that women’s physical health can actually deteriorate under the stress of divorce. In fact, the researcher, Fred Lorenz, found that stress levels in women jump immediately after a divorce as women adjust to the transition from being married to being single.
Men’s divorce-related stress often has to do with their tendency to want to get it over quickly and move on. This often causes men to make decisions quickly both financially and in their parenting plan. This is a giant mistake since the law in most states does not favor re-opening divorce settlements and parenting plans are designed for the long term and are extremely difficult to change.
Another issue unique to men getting divorced is that they are more likely to be faced with greater emotional adjustments than women due to the loss of social connections, the financial impact of the divorce, and the interruption of their relationship with their kids.
An amicable divorce, sometimes called a no-fault or uncontested divorce, does not mean that you have no differences; it means that you will likely agree on some things, and negotiate other issues respectfully and with full knowledge of your rights. You can see how this will minimize the adverse effects on both men and women, and, most importantly, your children.
Hire an Experienced Seattle or Bellevue-Redmond Divorce Attorney to Be by Your Side
It’s almost always best to have a lawyer on your side who is accustomed to amicable resolution of contested issues. And one thing is certain: you should find a legal team who is strong and compassionate and who will work with you to educate you about your rights so that you can make the process as dignified and efficient as possible.
Amicable divorces are cost effective, and far more private than airing your dirty laundry in court. If you can at all avoid it, it’s always best to try and keep your personal life out of the court record.
Some people want one lawyer to represent both sides in an amicable divorce. Lawyers are ethically prohibited from representing both individuals since each spouse has unique interests of their own in the divorce process. It’s best to have two lawyers who are each familiar with and supportive of the amicable divorce process. Another option is to hire one of us as a divorce lawyer mediator to help you work through the process and form an agreement together in mediation. Once you reach an agreement, you should always have it reviewed by your own lawyer.
An amicable divorce typically is settled directly between the parties and their attorneys or in mediation. Your lawyers will evaluate your case by determining how a family law judge would likely rule should the case go to trial. Because this is the measuring stick (so to speak), you want a lawyer who tries several cases per year, that way she or he can speak with authority as to how a judge might rule in a given situation.
Even in an amicable divorce, it is imperative to approach your settlement from a strong position. Avoiding conflict does not mean compromising fairness. Even if you don’t expect to go to trial, hiring a lawyer with solid trial experience is your best insurance. Opposing counsel takes your case more seriously when they know your lawyer will go the distance for you. This makes your settlement position much stronger.
Contact the DuBois Cary Law Group
If you have further questions about an amicable divorce solution, or want to arrange a confidential consultation with one of our Seattle or Bellevue-Redmond divorce attorneys, please contact us today. We have offices in Seattle and Bellevue-Redmond and can meet with you in one or both of those locations as needed. We look forward to meeting you and helping you pursue the amicable divorce solution you seek.