Contested or Uncontested Divorce?
Everyone has a unique situation, so the method you choose to end your marriage will correspond with that. If you do not have to go to court, there is no real reason to pursue that avenue. Going to court (contested divorce) can take more time and money than pursuing divorce the uncontested way. However, if you know you and your spouse are not going to agree on all of the details, such as property division, child custody and alimony, and you know that divorce is imminent, it would be best to file first. The best way to know whether contested or uncontested divorce is right for you is through contacting an experienced divorce lawyer.
When you’re starting down the divorce path, a lot of people ask about contested divorces and uncontested divorces and need to know the differences between them. A contested divorce is one in which the parties cannot agree on the issues or the terms of the issues. You don’t agree on the issues or the terms.
What are the issues? Health insurance is one; parenting plans and custody is the other; the division of assets and debt is third; and support payments — child support or alimony — would be the fourth.
In a contested divorce, you don’t agree to the issues or the amounts or terms of those issues. But in uncontested divorces, spouses agree on everything and don’t need the court’s help. Here’s what we do. In most cases, if it was that easy, chances are you would be staying married and you wouldn’t be splitting up. But we start the case and file it as a contested divorce and when everyone agrees at the end, we file a motion to modify it to an uncontested at the final hearing. So contested divorce, uncontested divorce—you may start on a contested track and then just file a motion to make it uncontested when you’re done.
It’s pretty simple stuff.