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If an agreement can be reached on terms that are reasonable and appropriate, we strongly recommend out-of-court settlements as opposed to a contested court trial. Such agreements allow the parties to make the important decisions regarding their parenting schedules, child support obligations, and division of marital assets. This is good, as they are certainly the people who have the most knowledge of these issues, and are the most affected by these decisions. Such negotiated settlements also have the major advantages of being much faster and much less expensive and acrimonious than the litigation process. The financial and emotional costs of litigation are often very high, even if the ultimate ruling of the Court is favorable. For these reasons, we work hard to help our clients minimize the expense and stress of divorce litigation by fully exploring the possibility of settlement agreements through collaborative negotiation.
That said, if the other side insists on an outcome that is unacceptable to our clients, then the litigation process will need to be pursued to obtain an order from the Court that, hopefully, results in an outcome that is appropriate, just, and consistent with the law.
We listen carefully to our clients’ explanation of their particular circumstances, objectives and reasons, so we can counsel them concerning the applicable laws that govern their rights and the legal process (including likely time frames and potential financial costs) for litigating their case. Only if clients understand the pros and cons of pursuing their various options, can they make informed decisions about how they would like to proceed. We strive to help our clients understand their options so they have a meaningful opportunity to pursue those options they believe are best. We believe if our clients understand what is happening with their case, and why, it will not only reduce their stress and uncertainty, it will also improve the results they obtain. With proper communication and counseling we work with our clients to create realistic expectations regarding their goals and how we can work together to achieve them.