When one person files for divorce, they submit tentative instructions for property division, child custody, spousal maintenance (alimony) and child support. The other spouse must then review and respond to those suggestions.
When one spouse agrees with the terms their ex suggests, they can sign the papers and move forward with an uncontested divorce. When the spouses do not agree on any of the major issues in their divorce, then they have a contested divorce that may lead to multiple days in front of a judge arguing about how to split up their property or parenting time.
If you or your ex did not agree with the initial suggestions at the time the other filed for divorce, you don’t have to litigate. There are several ways that you could still achieve an uncontested divorce.
Negotiate a postnuptial agreement
If you don’t yet have a date in court because you want to try to work on your marriage first, sitting down to discuss a postnuptial agreement could be a smart decision. Postnuptial agreements can give clear instructions about the major matters in a Texas divorce, serving largely the same purpose that a prenuptial agreement will despite the different timing.
Not only will you potentially have a faster divorce due to drafting a postnuptial agreement, but you may also be in a better position to work out your marital disputes.
Attempt to collaborate
Collaborative divorces require a different approach than a litigated divorce in court. You have to think about your ex as your partner and work cooperatively with them. Collaborative negotiations might involve you, your ex and your individual attorneys all meeting as a group or your lawyers directly negotiating.
In either arrangement, you will have the opportunity to settle disagreements you have about your divorce before you go to court.
They work with a mediator or arbitrator
Formal alternative dispute resolution systems have become popular in many states for divorcing couples, especially those with children. Arbitration and mediation both involve working with a third party in addition to your attorneys to try to create a solution to your current marital disputes. If successful, mediation or arbitration can facilitate an uncontested divorce.
Learning more about alternative solutions for your upcoming divorce can reduce the conflicts you experience and the costs you incur during the divorce.