Who’s divorce is it, anyways, when getting a legal divorce entrenches us in process? No worries, I can see that this sentence is confusing. Let me explain. Whether you chose to litigate, mediation, collaborate or arbitrate your divorce, there are some similarities in the information that is required in order to attain a legal divorce.
Full financial disclosure and a parenting plan, if kids are involved, are necessary regardless of which process you adopt. Sounds logical, right?
Not all clients understand that there are issues that are ‘molded’ legal requirements that are necessary in order to get your divorce stamped by the appropriate authorities declaring your divorce legal. Sometimes clients come into my office saying that they agree about the parenting plan and the financial split so I just have to put it together and they can file for divorce. Right? Wrong. Unfortunately. Divorce is a legal process. As such, if you want to legally divorce then you have to bend to the legal system and give your divorce lawyer the information they need so they can pen a legally-binding separation agreement.
Lawyers are bound by their requirement to provide their clients due diligence and legal advice surrounding outstanding issues. The information has to be provided to them in a fashion that is consistent with the legal process. As such, clients can own their own decisions and they can deviate from what family law thinks is fair and equitable but clients have to do so knowingly. Making informed decisions is what it’s really all about.
So you can own your own divorce but you have to beat to the legal drummer. The more you want to insist that you don’t need to adhere to the legal process and fill out the forms or provide the necessary information the more time you are going to spend while your team waits for you to conform to the process and provide the information that is required. Standing your ground can also cost you more money.
So, Who’s Divorce is it, Anyways?