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Three Alternatives To A Court Divorce

In a divorce situation where you don't want the unpleasantness of going to court, you may be looking around for alternatives that will be a better fit. Although alternative types of divorce, such as mediated divorce, require a certain set of circumstances (such as an amicable relationship and agreement on what to do with assets and child custody), they do offer viable opportunities to avoid the courtroom. Here are three types of alternatives you may want to consider if you find yourself in the throes of divorce.

1. Mediation

In a mediated divorce, the two parties involved sort things out with the help of a go-between called a mediator. The mediator needs to be someone who's not attached to either side of the case, meaning no mutual friends or relatives can fit the bill. It's best to hire someone who has experience in family law. 

A mediator cannot act as your personal lawyer, however; they're not allowed to give legal advice or advocate for either side. This means that if you want to hire legal counsel, you'll need to choose your own lawyer as well. If you aren't sure what to do about legal counsel, check out for more information. While this divorce process can be expensive since you'll have to pay two different professionals, it's often still more cost-efficient than a litigated divorce because of time savings. This type of divorce is also appropriate if you and your spouse had an amicable split, but still have a difficult time being together for a lengthy amount of time.

2. Collaborative

This type of divorce is one in which the parties involved work out the settlements together. Unlike a mediated divorce, however, the agreement is reached without the help of a neutral third party. Each side hires a lawyer, but all four of you work in concert to reach the best mutually beneficial agreements instead of fighting about the particulars. This type of divorce settlement requires a fairly stable relationship. And, it can be more cost-efficient than both a litigated divorce or a mediated divorce.

3. Do-it-yourself 

A do-it-yourself type of divorce is a good bet if you're in agreement on pretty much everything and don't have a lot of assets to worry about. You'll have to be able to agree on things like:

  • Custody rights
  • Child support
  • The division of property

If this doesn't sound like your situation, one of the other options may be better for you.

These and other types of divorce can be tailored to meet the needs of individual situations. You can even combine elements of these types to help your case go along better. These options mean you can figure out what will work best for your relationship and your circumstances.