Learn more about what to expect in your divorce.
Divorces are a time where your patience and resolve will be tested, and your temper and emotions spent. In all cases of divorce litigation the courts must decide the following:
Division of marital assets and debts
Custody of minor children
Maintenance and child support payments
When there is a substantial disagreement with any of the above then the divorce dispute is considered “contested”. A contested divorce is always the most emotionally-draining and unfortunate type of divorce. Usually, by the time a couple is in the stage where divorce is on the table both parties are ready to see it through to the end. There are times, however, when one party does not wish to end the marriage and feels that there may be an opportunity to reconcile, or when the party is not in agreement with the terms of a particular settlement proposal.
Finding the right divorce attorney
Amanda McGowan, an experienced Georgia divorce lawyer, has represented clients on opposite ends of this spectrum. I have had clients who come to me in hopes that we can mediate a separation agreement that will prevent or stall divorce proceedings so that they can work on the marriage. I’ve also had clients who require assistance in leaving their marriage. The key in both sets of circumstances is in being able to provide not only high quality legal representation, but taking off the lawyer hat for a moment to provide that human shoulder to cry on.
Settlement and Mediation
Many times we will have a client walk through the door that believes that there can be no out of court agreement because his or her spouse is “unwilling” to negotiate only to find that initiation from a contested divorce attorney created an opening that he or she could not manage on their own. Sometimes when dialogue has broken down between two people it can be reopened by a third party. Most contested divorce lawyers will make some attempt for out of court settlement negotiations and mediation because it not only saves on cost and time, but also enables the two parties to leave the marriage without the rancor that can sometimes come in a divorce court environment.
In most contested divorces we reach out to the other party to attempt to create a settlement agreement, which is beneficial to all parties. If we can mediate and negotiate the terms prior, by the time you reach the phase where your divorce petition has reached the courts the case may already be considered uncontested.
Finding those divorce attorneys who will put your needs and desired outcomes before their desires for more billable hours is not always easy to find. We believe that word of mouth is our best advertisement and that if we do our job correctly, ethically, and compassionately we will always have a steady flow of clients and hours.
The end of a relationship that you have invested in is always difficult. Leaning on your attorney to do what you have no heart to do is sometimes the best option. We will seek settlement terms that are fair to you on your behalf and ensure that you and any children you may have custody of (or seek custody of) are taking care of to the best lengths the law will allow.