Know Your Options: Five Types of Divorce You Can Consider

Every 13 seconds, a marriage dissolves in the United States. That is the equivalent of 277 divorces per hour, 6,646 divorces per day, 46,523 divorces per week, and 2,419,196 divorces each year. A divorce process can be the most challenging period in someone’s life, and it is often made more complicated when children are involved.

What is divorce?

Divorce is the legal dissolution of a marriage by a court or other competent body. Once a divorce is granted, the parties are no longer married and can remarry if they wish.

According to a recent national survey, the most prevalent reason offered by couples who divorce is a lack of commitment. Some reasons are more common in women (such as domestic violence), while infidelity is more common in men.

Though the divorce rate has been declining since its high in the 1980s, about 40 to 50% of marriages still end in divorce. With such a significant number of marriages ending in divorce, it’s important to understand the different types of divorce and the potential problems that can arise. There are various methods available to reach the goal of divorce; here are the five different types of divorce:

1. Uncontested Divorce

The uncontested divorce is a type of divorce in which the court simply grants the requested divorce without going through the complete adversarial process. To summarize, an uncontested divorce happens when the spouses do not contend with each other over their separation or divorce terms.

One of the advantages of an uncontested divorce is that it can be completed relatively quickly and without much stress. It is also usually less expensive than a contested divorce since there is no need for lawyers or a lengthy court battle. Additionally, couples who can amicably agree on the terms of their divorce are often more likely to maintain a positive relationship for the sake of their children, if they have any. This can make co-parenting after divorce much more manageable.

2. Contested Divorce

When your husband/wife is opposed to everything in the case, including the divorce itself, child custody, financial aid, or asset division, you’re dealing with a contentious divorce. A contested divorce is more complicated than an uncontested divorce. It’s always preferable to obtain legal advice before filing for a contentious divorce. This type of divorce often happens when couples have been married for a long time or have significant financial holdings.
One advantage of a contested divorce is that it allows each party to have their say in court and to have a judge make the final decision. This can be beneficial if the couple is unable to agree on a particular issue or if one party feels that the other is not being fair. Additionally, a contested divorce can offer more protection for each party if there is a disagreement about the terms of the divorce.

couple in a counseling room

3. Mediated Divorce

A mediated divorce is one in which you and your spouse agree on your own divorce settlement with the aid of a third party, known as a mediator. You don’t go to court, and there isn’t a judge involved other than to sign off on your settlement when it’s done. This divorce often happens when couples want to avoid a lengthy and expensive court battle. There are divorce mediation services available to help teams reach an agreement.

They will help the process to be less expensive and time-consuming than a contested divorce. Additionally, this divorce process often allows couples to maintain a more amicable relationship since they are working together to reach an agreement. This can be beneficial for the sake of any children involved. Some concerns divorce mediation can handle are child custody, spousal support, and division of assets.

4. Unilateral Divorce

A unilateral divorce is one in which only one-party files for divorce. This type of divorce often happens when the other party is unwilling to divorce or when there are significant disagreements about the divorce terms. Most of the time, unilateral divorces can be more costly on your resources than an uncontested divorce. Still, it may be the only option if the other spouse is unwilling to cooperate. One advantage of a unilateral divorce is that it can be completed relatively quickly since only one party needs to file the divorce papers.

5. Fault and No-Fault Divorce

A fault divorce is one in which one party is considered at fault for the divorce. This type of divorce often happens when allegations of adultery or abuse occur. One advantage of a fault divorce is that it can allow the party who is not at fault to receive a greater share of assets in the divorce. A no-fault divorce is one in which neither party is considered at fault for the divorce. This type of divorce often happens when couples have been separated for a significant period, and both parties agree to the divorce. For example, in some states, couples must be separated for a year before filing for a no-fault divorce. One advantage of a no-fault divorce is that it can be completed relatively quickly without proving that either party is at fault.

All in All

No one enters into a marriage expecting it to end in divorce. However, for some couples, divorce is the best solution. No matter what type of divorce you are facing, it is crucial to seek the advice of a divorce lawyer to ensure that your rights are protected. Always remember that your goal is to protect yourself and your children during this difficult time.

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