By: Attorney Gregory M. Hildebrand, Partner at Hansen & Hildebrand, S.C.
Deciding to divorce is one of the most difficult decisions you can make during your lifetime. Divorce impacts every aspect of your life including your family’s finances and interpersonal relationships now and in the future.
One critical, but often overlooked step in deciding to divorce, is deciding how to divorce. The process you and your spouse choose will have a significant impact not only on the divorce process itself, but also on the shape and nature of your future financial well-being and family relationships.
Couples have various options that are outlined in detail on our website. These include attempting to navigate the divorce process themselves, working jointly with a neutral lawyer mediator, choosing two lawyers to advise and assist them in reaching agreements in a collaborative process, and the traditional adversarial divorce process with lawyers.
It is important to understand that not making a deliberate decision on a divorce process at the outset means you may end up in an expensive adversarial process by default – even if that is not what either of you wants. Simply filing a divorce without a clear choice and defined process alternative like Mediation or the Collaborative Process leaves parties in the often high conflict and costly traditional court process.
Unfortunately, many lawyers do not discuss process options with clients – leaving them in the traditional system. At Hansen and Hildebrand, we believe it is critical not only to help you evaluate your circumstances and legal options, but also to understand and assess your family and financial goals to choose the process that is right for you.
Though the court process may be necessary to address financial manipulation or domestic abuse, most clients would benefit from an alternative process. Mediation (one neutral lawyer) or Collaborative (each has a lawyer) can provide a structured roadmap to resolution, as well as a foundation for future communication and problem-solving.
Contact us today to schedule a free initial phone call with one of our experienced lawyers who can help you weigh options for next steps. For more information to help you make a decision that is right for you and your family call (414) 273-2422.