Divorce is Not All the Same: The Alternatives

Divorce is Not All the Same: The Alternatives

Many people have a rather little or narrow idea of a divorce. They think it is all courtroom drama and custody hearings. However, that is just one option available to those who want to end their marriage. There are less traumatic options out there.
Here is a quick look at what choices you have when it comes to divorce:

Litigated Divorce

A litigated divorce is what most people think of when they talk about divorce. This is what is often called the “traditional” model of divorce. It usually involves both parties hiring lawyers so that they can be properly represented and they go through the normal divorce proceedings.

In truth, most litigated divorces end up in court. Only the worst and acrimonious ones end up there, requiring a judge to make a decision on the various issues involved. Divorces like these are confrontational because they function like lawsuits. One party wants out of the marriage and is being aggressive about it. That is why most divorces of this sort tend to become emotional, especially when it comes to custody and property distribution.
However, don’t be fooled by the outward sense of aggression. Most of it comes from the two parties involved, but the lawyers they hired are trained to get a reasonable settlement for both sides. If you are forced to take a litigated divorce, always listen to your lawyer so that things don’t get worse.

Collaborative Divorce

A collaborative divorce is similar to a litigated divorce in most aspects but for one thing: both parties have agreed to the divorce. They still hire lawyers but the aim is to settle everything out of court. For this to happen, the lawyers often have experience with the collaborative divorce process.
The main goal of the collaborative divorce process is to have a settlement agreement. To get this done, both partners meet with their lawyers and draw up what they think is a reasonable settlement and then the two sides negotiate until an agreement is reached. If one is reached, both parties just appear in court to finalize the agreement.

Before all this happens, though, all parties sign an agreement that any threat of litigation or disagreement will result in traditional litigated divorce proceedings, with both sides hiring new lawyers.


Mediation is the least aggressive approach. It is possible to get divorce mediation services in Long Island and in other urban areas so that you can have a smoother time of it. With mediation, there are no separate lawyers. Both parties have a single neutral mediator that might be a lawyer or not. The important thing is that they are trained in divorce and family law and that they aim to get people to agree on a deal that both sides are happy with. Since it is less of a confrontation, it can lead to a smoother separation between two people.
Divorce does not always have to be a painful experience. The options above outline what you can do so that you can have a painless divorce. Use them so that you can start the next phase of your life without the emotional burden that a painful divorce can cause you.

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