The Divorce Settlement: What To Know

Law Blog

When you settle a legal case, that means that the case has come to an end and all parties agree to the provisions. To learn more about this important milestone in the divorce process, read on.

Common Divorce Issues

Divorcing couples share issues in common. Below are some of the most common things couples argue about during the divorce process:

  • Child custody and visitation
  • Who pays the debts of the marriage
  • Which party gets marital property (particularly the family home)
  • Who gets the family pet

Settlement Conferences

In some cases, the couple meets periodically in a casual manner across a conference table accompanied by their divorce lawyers. This allows the parties to speak to each (sometimes through their lawyers) about issues in contention. They learn where each other stands and what needs to be resolved.

Before the conference, parties may speak with their attorney about the issues they feel most strongly about and some that they are willing to be more flexible about. For instance, a party might agree to give up a bank account if the other party agrees to drop the spousal support issue. Often, the issues that are the most difficult to resolve involve minor children. In many cases, settlement conferences allow couples to resolve issues without having to take further actions—but not always.

Dealing with Disagreements Using Mediation

Some couples agree on some issues on their own. They then take what they agreed upon to their

divorce lawyer to have it put into writing. When they are unable to agree on certain provisions, the lawyer might suggest the couple participate in mediation. A professional mediator works with the couple individually and together to arrive at compromises. Once an agreement is fostered, it's put into writing as well.

What is the Alternative to a Settlement?

Divorcing parties are advised to work problems out with the divorce on their own, in settlement conferences, or at mediation. The only option left if they don't work out the issues is to have the judge make the decisions for them. The judge only knows about the couple's issues through documents and court testimony. Given that information, the decisions they make about important divorce matters are based on the law, fairness, and with the best interests of minor children in mind.

Visit a divorce law firm to find out more about the above settlement issues and try to work things out on your own.


26 October 2022