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White Plains Divorce Law Blog

In what situations might divorce mediation be a bad idea?

Divorce mediation is an excellent option for many New York couples seeking to end their marriages. In most cases, mediation is less stressful, less expensive and less contentious than litigation. However, it is not always the right choice for some people.

Part of the duty attorneys owe their clients is helping them identify solutions that will provide the most benefits. At the same time, good lawyers want to minimize any hardships their clients may experience during and after a divorce. As such, skilled attorneys know when and when not to recommend divorce mediation. Some scenarios in which mediation may be inappropriate include the following:

Finding ways to distract yourself after divorce

For some people, the real trouble with divorce isn't the divorce itself. It's the time after. That's when they really feel the change in their lives.

It can be challenging. This is especially true if your spouse asked for the divorce, but it's true even if you wanted it. It's still a big shift in your life, and it may come with changes that you don't love -- such as not seeing your kids 100% of the time because you now have to share custody.

Are you making assumptions about your divorce?

Almost everyone has an opinion about divorce and the divorce process. If you haven't experienced divorce yourself, you probably know someone who has. It's a common occurrence that can happen to anyone in any kind of relationship.

Despite the fact that divorce is a normal part of modern life, that doesn't mean that everyone's opinions and beliefs about it are accurate. People who divorce may make incorrect assumptions about the event. Here are several common and potentially harmful beliefs about divorce that may be helpful for you and your family if you're considering a divorce.

Is it possible to lower your child support payments?

Attorneys usually find it difficult to provide a definitive answer to questions like this one about lowering child support payments. Not knowing anything about a person and his or her divorce makes it even more challenging to offer answers. However, in the interest of keeping divorced New York parents aware of their options, this post will highlight a few ways that it may be possible to have your support payments lowered.

Before going forward, it is important to understand that it is up to a court to make final decisions about both child custody and support. Even if you and your co-parent agree to modify a court order, it is a judge's responsibility to ensure that your child's needs remain filled. With that said, below you will find three ways to try lowering your financial obligations.

Do men or women file for divorce more often?

One rather curious thing about divorce is that initiating the action is not equally represented between the genders. When looking exclusively at opposite-sex marriages, researches have found that women are far more likely to be the ones to initiate a divorce. Women are more often the ones who take the first step to end the relationship.

What this implies is that women either have more initiative than men or that they tend to be less happy in dysfunctional marriages -- or both. One study found that women also tended to be happier after splitting up, which does show that they often felt pressure due to their unhappiness with their relationships.

What should you include in a cohabitation agreement?

Marriage is still alive and well in the state of New York, but many residents choose to cohabit instead of tying the knot. Couples have chosen to live together over marriage for many years, but most of them approach this big decision casually. Love and romance can come and go, but without protection, would-be lovers may also lose their assets when love takes a leave of absence.

It seems like a contract or a cohabitation agreement might suck all the joy out of a loving relationship. However, as many have discovered, such an agreement does very little harm to a loving relationship. To get you thinking wisely about such a document, take a look at the following elements to include in your agreement. An experienced family law attorney can help you draft important documents like this.

Is collaborative divorce the same as divorce mediation?

Unless you have already experienced a divorce in the state of New York, divorce mediation and collaborative divorce are likely foreign terms to you. They are two ways of ending a marriage without having to take the matter into a courtroom. While these two methods are similar in some ways, they are not the same thing. If you are planning to get divorced, it is wise to learn the differences between the two before you commit to either method.

Collaborative divorce

Your pleasant personality could lead to an unfair property split

We know you don't need us to tell you how difficult it is to get a divorce. However, we choose to bring up these challenging situations to make sure that you prepare yourself for what is to come when divorcing. Aside from child custody and support, property division is one of the most frustrating parts of a divorce.

Both you and your spouse want to make certain your property settlement is fair and balanced. New York and other states rely on the equitable division model to eliminate unfair settlements. This means that a judge will make the final decision during the property division stage of divorce, but the system is not 100% foolproof. If you have the type of personality that strives to avoid conflict, you could harm your chances of a fair settlement.

Is thinking about divorce sparking other problems in your life?

Whether you've been married for just a few years or have been with your spouse for decades, you've likely encountered challenges in your relationship. Most New York couples would agree that there are ups and downs in the average marriage. Many would also say that when the downs outweigh the ups, it often is a sign that spouses are headed for divorce.

Even thinking about divorce can have a negative ripple effect into other areas of your life. You may be at a crossroads where you're trying to determine a best course of action regarding your current circumstances and marital problems. Building a strong support network from the start is a good idea whether you wind up seeking marriage counseling or filing a petition to divorce.

Deciding what you actually want in divorce

They say that a truly fair compromise is one that leaves no one happy. Odds are, you're going to need to compromise a bit as you get divorced, and you may not always be thrilled with the outcome. Your spouse may feel the same way.

The key, then, is to understand that you can't have everything. What you want to do instead is to focus directly on the things you really want. When you know what your ultimate priority is, you can decide how to proceed.

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