Contested Divorce Lawyers in Downers Grove Providing Experienced Representation
If your marriage is coming to an end, you and your spouse may have decided that divorce is the best option. But if you two cannot agree on the major points of your divorce, mediation or even a trial in front of a judge may be the path forward. A contested divorce means that you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse could not reach an agreement on your own. While contested divorces can be time-consuming and costly, with an experienced divorce attorney on your side, you can expedite the process and make it go as quickly as possible.
At The Law Offices of Robert B. Buchanan, we are dedicated to representing our clients and advocating for their wants and needs during divorce proceedings. Whether you want assistance in mediation or need representation in court, we can provide it all. Call us today at 630-866-8303 for a free consultation and to learn more about how we can help you.
What’s the Difference Between a Contested and Uncontested Divorce?
An uncontested divorce is typically a faster process than a contested divorce. In an uncontested divorce, divorcing couples agree on the majority of the terms within the divorce. One spouse files the petition, and the other is notified that divorce proceedings have started. If neither spouse objects, the divorce can typically be finalized in six months to a year.
On the other hand, a contested divorce is when both spouses cannot reach an agreement on the major terms of the divorce. If the spouses cannot reach an agreement on issues like child custody, property division, and asset distribution, then the divorce remains contested. A contested divorce can be resolved in a few different ways, but the process may be lengthy and more time-consuming. However, with an experienced attorney on your side, you can speed the process up and make sure your wants and needs are represented the entire time.
What Issues May Need to be Addressed in Contested Cases?
Although all divorce cases are different, there are some main points that many couples find themselves in disagreement on. Working with a contested divorce attorney can help you reach a middle ground and advocate for your own rights while petitioning for divorce.
Common issues that need to be resolved in the contested divorce process include:
Child Custody and Child Support
If you and your spouse have children, the divorce papers will specify how much custody each parent gets and who is assuming parental duties. It can also determine who is paying child support and how much child support is to be paid each month. Parents are obligated to provide monetary support, including healthcare, for their minor children even after divorce.
Previously called alimony, spousal maintenance, or spousal support, is payment from one spouse to another to uphold a certain standard of living or to maintain the needs of a spouse. Typically, the court will decide the amount of spousal support owed and the duration that it is owed.
Equitable Distribution of Assets
Any marital assets you and your spouse acquired throughout the marriage must be divided equally. Determining marital property from non-marital property can be complex and often involves a judge’s ruling. Marital property typically means all property, including debts and other obligations.
How are Contested Cases Resolved?
Contested divorce cases can vary depending on the issues and the divorcing couple. However, there are a few common ways in which contested divorces are resolved.
These resolution strategies include:
If you and your spouse are close to coming to a resolution, meeting with a mediator is your best path forward. A mediator will provide an unbiased opinion and help each party advocate for their needs. A mediator can also assist in reaching a compromise to incorporate those agreements into a Marital Status Agreement.
In a collaborative divorce, both spouses retain a collaborative law lawyer to advocate for them. They may also hire other professionals, like financial advisors, child psychologists, or personal coaches, to help resolve specific issues within the case. However, if an agreement is not reached during this stage, each party must discontinue service with their collaborative lawyers and hire new ones for further proceedings.
The final option for resolving a contested divorce is litigation in front of a judge. In this case, each spouse can hire a professional attorney to represent them in court. As your legal representation, a lawyer on our team could advocate for you in court and negotiate your needs to get fair divorce papers drawn.
Should I Hire a Contested Divorce Lawyer?
Going through a divorce can be a stressful and time-consuming process. Negotiating with your spouse and attempting to reach an agreement can add frustration to this already difficult time. If you and your spouse have difficulties reaching a divorce agreement that suits you both, don’t hesitate to reach out.
Our team of experienced divorce attorneys can help you in the following ways:
- Preparing, filing, and serving the divorce petition
- Gathering information and evidence to plead your case in court, if needed
- Engaging in pretrial and case management meetings
- Negotiating with your spouse or their legal counsel
- Preparing for trial, if needed
- Representing you in court, if needed
Please don’t feel like you have to go through this challenging time on your own. Our team of attorneys is ready to help you wrap up this chapter in your life quickly so you can look ahead. Call The Law Offices of Robert B. Buchanan today at 630-866-8303 for a free consultation and to learn more about our services.