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Overview of a divorce through the litigation process

The litigation process uses a judge and the court system as a means to reach a resolution in a divorce case. During litigation, many times certain issues will need to be decided on a temporary basis pending the conclusion of your case. These matters, such as payment of expenses, who lives where, parenting time, etc., will be decided by a judge if an agreement cannot be reached. These temporary arrangements will often be determined after a judge hears very brief arguments at a hearing. These quickly made decisions can remain in place for a long period of time and can have a large impact on the final resolution of your case.

Obtaining financial information during litigation can be a costly undertaking, with spouses answering lengthy written questions and testifying at depositions. While it is possible, and actually very likely, that an ultimate resolution will be reached prior to a trial, attorneys and clients are preparing for this trial throughout the litigation process, expending what in most cases will ultimately be unnecessary emotional and financial efforts. In the litigation process, settlements are frequently reached in fear of pending hearings and trial dates. This can lead to rushed decisions that may not be well thought out and perhaps later regretted.

The collaborative process puts you and your spouse in charge of your divorce. You proceed at a pace that is comfortable to you and are provided the resources such as divorce coaches, child specialists and financial neutrals. This team and process empowers you and your spouse to make well-informed decisions in a respectful manner in order to reach an amicable resolution.

Meghan E Lipford, J.D.

Meghan E Lipford is a collaborative attorney with Berecz and Associates PLC. She can be reached at 616.667.2217 and more information is available at www.FamilyResolutions.us.