Uncontested Divorce: When Is It Appropriate?
Posted in Divorce on October 12, 2016
Divorce is often thought of as a drawn-out, expensive courtroom battle, but it doesn’t have to be that way. An uncontested divorce offers couples an affordable, timely way to avoid the expense and drama of a contested divorce.
An uncontested divorce is appropriate in a wide variety of situations, including the following:
Couples Who Have No Children Or Who Can Agree On Child-Related Issues
Couples without children avoid many of the biggest, most emotional sticking points in contested divorces: child custody and child support disputes. If you and your spouse don’t have children and you’re able to agree on an equitable division of your marital property, or, as is frequently the case, you have already divided up your things, an uncontested divorce provides a low-cost alternative to traditional divorce.
Even if you have children but you can agree on child custody and child support, an uncontested divorce may be appropriate. You can save thousands of dollars in attorney fees, using the financial resources that might otherwise go to a prolonged court battle to instead help build a strong future for yourself and your children. Moreover in Pennsylvania, couples can divorce without mentioning the children at all in the procedure and then can work out support and/or custody on their own without the court’s interference.
Couples Without Significant Assets Or Debts
You might not have been married long. Or you and your spouse simply might not have acquired significant assets (a house, a business or other properties) or significant debts (mortgage, loans, etc.). Then, there’s no reason for you to pay an expensive divorce lawyer to help divide property and debts; if you can agree upon the fair allocation of your property, it would be in your best interests to file for an uncontested divorce.
Couples Who Want To Control Their Divorce
Should you seek a traditional, contested divorce, your divorce attorney will present your arguments to the court, and your soon-to-be ex-spouse’s lawyer will do the same. After hearing both sides, a judge who doesn’t know you or necessarily understand your priorities will decide the terms of your divorce. Taking your divorce to court means you will have to live with the terms the judge imposes. If, instead, you want to control the terms of your divorce, an uncontested divorce is the only way to go.
An uncontested divorce enables you to keep control of your divorce and your future. By cooperating with your soon to be ex-spouse, you share control over how much money you spend on your divorce, how your marital property is divided and, if you have a family, how it is reconfigured after your divorce.
Couples Who Can Agree On The Terms Of Divorce – Summary
Even if you have children and/or have acquired significant debts and assets, if you and your spouse can reach an agreement on the terms of your divorce, you will be able to file for and to obtain an uncontested divorce. Depending upon your personal circumstances, you may have to consider things such as:
- Property division
- Child custody
- Child support
- Alimony/spousal support
As long as you agree on the terms, an uncontested divorce will allow you to be divorced on the terms you’ve chosen, rather than having the terms forced on you by a court.