It has become an accepted fact in the institution of marriage, that at some point in time, one spouse or both may decide to end their marriage. There are four types of proceedings under Pennsylvania law, by which husband and wife may end the marriage.
The first option is called the uncontested divorce. In this type of proceeding, both parties have agreed that it is best to divorce. Pennsylvania law does require a 90 day “cooling off” period, so that both parties will have time to reflect upon the situation, and make sure that the decision has not been made in haste. There are of course advantages, and disadvantages to proceeding with an uncontested divorce.
Lets face it, a good divorce lawyer in pa, while not unreasonably expensive, is not exactly cheap either. PA Divorce lawyers are among the finest in the nation, and will need to charge a reasonable fee, that will allow them compensation, for the many long hours of hard work that is required to stay at the top of their profession. Perhaps both parties have already talked to a divorce lawyer in pa, and have decided that the fee exceeds the total property and financial assets of the marriage. Perhaps an uncontested divorce may be the way to go. Make sure all economic issues have been resolved.
The second option might be a contested divorce. In this type of proceeding, one party or the other, will not consent to the divorce. If that is the case, a two year waiting period is imposed from the time of separation. Now be careful with this option, because one or the other party may attempt to turn the matter into a fault proceeding, because there is no waiting period. However a fault proceeding is a difficult matter. Why?, because the spouse that brings that type of proceeding must prove complete innocence , while showing complete fault of the other spouse. In any event make sure you consult with a Philadelphia Divorce lawyer if you happen to live in the area. Once the two years have passed, the court will grant a divorce even if the other party does not consent.
Another option available is divorce mediation. This could be a very good way for parties who find themselves in general agreement, but have a few small issues that remain unresolved. Divorce mediators and arbitrators are highly trained professionals, that provide assistance either through a court system, or can act independently on behalf of the parties involved. They are very capable of providing alternative dispute resolution, or ADR as it is called, to involved parties. Many times there is a much higher accelerated result due to less contention between the parties, and consequentially leads to a much lower cost for the divorce.
What’s so nice about this option, is that the mediator is highly skilled in facilitation, and negotiation techniques, while at the same time, it is an informal and voluntary process. You don’t have to participate, if you don’t want to. Unlike the courts, which principally engage in litigation, and an arbitrary process, this type of mediator never imposes a solution on the involved parties. The mediator merely assists both parties in reaching an understanding, they both can agree on. Mediated agreements can very often provide unique solutions to unique problems in a divorce situation.
Mediation is very flexible, and creative at the same time. For instance, you can have a private caucus or send messages, offer proposals, counter proposals, just about anything you need to do, to reach an agreement. It is of course non-binding unless both parties come to a settlement of mutual acceptance.
If you decide to take that first step toward a divorce, it would be highly beneficial and advisable to hire a divorce attorney. When you stop to consider the numerous options and detailed legalities involved, a do it yourself option could have far ranging consequences. The issues in a divorce can become so complex, and so detailed, that only a professional divorce attorney can resolve them. It is imperative that your rights are protected, and the complexities of the issues have not put you in a bad position. For instance, divorce attorneys can make many filings and motions that are beyond the knowledge of a lay person. They also have the knowledge and experience to see to it, your rights are fully respected when it comes to matters of child custody and support and other complex issues, that only divorce attorneys can handle.
Don’t wait one more day. Contact the law offices of Reinherz & Reinherz and let us help you get the fresh start you deserve!