Five Different Ways to Get Divorced

Posted on: 18 August 2015

If you've never considered divorce before, it may surprise you to realize that there are so many ways to go about it. But in fact, getting divorced is a complicated activity that does involve several choices and options. Before you contact your divorce lawyer, you'll want to get a sense of which choice is right for you and what your circumstances will allow. Here are five different ways you can get divorced.

1. Litigated

The most common type of divorce, litigated divorce means you each hire a lawyer to represent you if you want to get a good deal out of it. This is especially important when there are any complications in the case, including

  • Assets
  • Children
  • Pets 
  • Alimony payments

Litigated divorce may or may not end up in court.

3. DIY

Do-it-yourself divorce is only a good idea if you really know your way around divorce laws (possibly because you're an attorney yourself?) or if you're sure there will be no complications. This might be the case if you're sure your spouse will cooperate, you have no pets or children, neither of you wants to be paid alimony, and you own no assets and earn the exact same amount of money. 

4. Mediation

The critical difference between mediation and do-it-yourself is that a third party is involved. This third party's role is to mediate between the spouses, that is, to try to help them reach a divorce agreement. That doesn't mean they'll try to obtain the agreement that's best for you. The third party, or mediator, isn't allowed to give you advice or to be an advocate for one side or the other, because the role is required to be a disinterested (neutral) one. This means that relatives, old family friends, and mutual acquaintances are basically disqualified for the job. 

5. Default

This one can be great fun. You can file for divorce in some states and have it granted automatically. The only caveat is that your spouse has to do and say nothing in order for this to work. So if your husband or wife is prone to giving you the silent treatment for months on end or simply ignoring everything you say (even if it has "divorce filing" somewhere in the sentence) this option may work out for you. However, it's most applicable for situations in which one spouse has disappeared, possibly for good, and the other spouse is sick of waiting.

These five options are just a few of the ways to get divorced in modern-day America. If any of these sound applicable to your situation, be sure to do further research on that option before you choose it. For assistance, consult a lawyer like Robert E Long & Associates Ltd.