Collaborative Divorce & Mediation in Houston
Divorce Options for Spouses Who Wish to Avoid a Trial.
Divorce is never easy, but it doesn’t have to be contentious. There are divorce alternatives for spouses that wish to avoid a divorce trial such as mediation and collaborative family law. There’s even an uncontested divorce option for spouses that have already come to an agreement on all matters pertaining to the divorce settlement and only need a lawyer to help process the documents.
The Collaborative Law Divorce Option in Houston
How it Works: In a Collaborative Law divorce, spouses each hire a collaborative law attorney from different law firms. Each party in the Collaborative Law process signs an agreement which specifies no one may go to court and spouses will disclose and share in good faith all information pertaining to the divorce including property, assets and children.
Benefits to the Collaborative Law Process Include:
- It avoids the courtroom
- It’s financially conscious
- It fits to your schedule
- It’s completely confidential
- It’s customizable to your needs
- Opportunities to develop creative alternatives to property division and custody matters
- Spouses work toward an amicable solution to create a "win-win" situation for all.
What happens if spouses can’t settle all matters after-all using the Collaborative law approach? If spouses later decide they can’t resolve all matters of their divorce after starting the collaborative process, then both attorneys must withdraw and cannot represent the spouses any further. Each spouse will need to retain a new lawyer for their now contested divorce.
If you suspect your spouse is hiding assets, then the collaborative law approach may not be the optimal option for your divorce.
Divorce Mediation in Texas
Mediation is confidential and works by allowing both parties (you and your spouse) to sit with your attorneys and a professional, neutral third-party, known as the “mediator”. After hearing your wishes and your spouse’s wishes, the mediator will go back and forth between both parties to negotiate a final settlement.
- IF you and your spouse are able to settle your case in mediation, then that mediation settlement agreement is binding and irrevocable.
- IFyou and your spouse can’t reach an agreement through mediation or any informal negotiation, then the next step in the divorce process is likely preparing for trial.
To successfully prepare for your divorce mediation – check out our family law blog for tips and recommendations. The more prepared you are, the more productive your mediation will be.
Other Divorce Alternatives: Uncontested Divorce
Another option for couples wanting to avoid a trial is an uncontested divorce. An uncontested divorce is a divorce in which spouses have come to an agreement on all matters pertaining to their divorce settlement – leaving no issues left to contest. A lawyer’s role in this process may include drafting and filing the divorce petition and any waivers, drafting and filing qualified domestic relations orders (QDROs), (as needed), and representing you at your uncontested divorce hearing.
An uncontested divorce is typically a quicker, less expensive option than most alternatives to dissolve a marriage. That is, of course, if both spouses have complete information about marital assets and debts and the details of the assets/debts are fairly simple and not complex.
For an uncontested divorce to be successful, both parties (you and your spouse) will need to come to an agreement that you both believe to be “just and right” on the split of property division, custody, parenting time and support. Spouses will need to understand what they are signing and will voluntarily sign all papers.
Reasons to Work with Hendershot, Cannon & Hisey, P.C.
For more than two and half decades, our law firm has served families throughout Texas and the greater Houston area, providing skilled and effective legal guidance in complex family and divorce-related cases.
To see how our firm can help you, call us at (713) 909-7323.