For some couples, the process of ending a marriage can be complex and even acrimonious, but it doesn’t always have to be. In some cases, it may be possible for you and your spouse to agree on all aspects of your divorce settlement and parenting agreement. This is called an uncontested divorce. In an uncontested divorce, you will need to come to an amicable agreement about the following issues:
- Child custody and visitation
- Child support
- Spousal support, also called alimony
- Division of property (including pets)
- Division of debts
An uncontested divorce doesn’t mean that going through a divorce won’t be a difficult, even life-altering experience for you and your family, but there are many benefits to coming to an amicable agreement. It can save you and your spouse time and money, and – if there are children involved – it can help establish habits and patterns that will make you both better co-parents to your shared children. Here are 4 benefits to an uncontested divorce for co-parenting:
#1. Healthy Communication Habits
If you are married and have children with your spouse, your relationship with your future ex-spouse will continue even after your divorce is finalized. You will need to continue to co-parent together, to communicate about decisions that impact your children, and to see each other at your children’s major life milestones – graduations, weddings, possibly even holidays.
In an uncontested divorce, both spouses will have to agree about all of the issues in the divorce agreement, which means both spouses must be willing to compromise. While this might not be easy, it can help to establish habits of respectful communication, negotiation, and collaboration that will serve you both well as you raise your children in the years to come. Your ongoing relationship with your future ex-spouse and co-parent will require your best communication skills as you both do what is necessary for the well-being of your shared children.
For your children, this can mean that instead of bearing witness to conflicts that pit the two people they love most against each other, they will see you working as a team. By watching your marriage end in this way, they will learn that even when relationships don’t work out, a couple can still communicate with respect.
If you and your spouse have children, you are probably already worried about the impact of your divorce on them. An uncontested divorce will likely be significantly less acrimonious than a contested divorce, which will help mitigate the stress and harm that your children will experience from witnessing hostility and resentment between their parents during the divorce process.
It will also feel more peaceful to you and your future ex-spouse, allowing you both to move forward without any additional feelings of anger and resentment. Instead, you can both feel a sense of satisfaction in having reached an amicable agreement that honors your past together and helps you and your children move into a new future without unnecessary conflict.
By reaching an agreement without the intervention of a judge, you will have more control over the outcome of that agreement than if you are forced to have an outsider make those decisions for you. You and your spouse know yourselves, your lives, and your children better than anyone. With an uncontested divorce, you will be able to customize the agreement to suit you and your children’s needs.
It might seem counterintuitive to say that by reaching compromises with your spouse you will ultimately have more control over the outcomes of your divorce, but remember that you will be compelled to compromise one way or another. In a contested divorce, you relinquish the ultimate decision of how and where those compromises will be made to a judge.
Contested divorces can be a lengthy, expensive, and complicated process. With an uncontested divorce, you will likely be able to come to an agreement in as much time as it takes you and your spouse to reach an agreement about all the issues and file the case in court. Without a drawn-out court battle, your marriage can end much more quickly. For parents, this ability to exit the uncomfortable limbo stage before your divorce is finalized and begin your new lives can help your family adjust and recover without unnecessary delays.
How an Attorney Can Help You Achieve an Uncontested Divorce
If you are hoping that you and your spouse can have an uncontested divorce, a reputable family law attorney can help you to understand all that is involved in that process. They can also offer an honest assessment of your particular situation and provide suggestions about how to achieve an uncontested divorce with minimal conflict. Finally, an experienced divorce lawyer can also help to ensure you complete all the required paperwork correctly, prepare adequately for court hearings, and represent you during them.
They can also help you to regroup if it becomes apparent that an uncontested divorce is no longer possible. Sometimes, no matter how hard you try, an uncontested divorce is not possible or even preferable. For example, if your spouse has concealed assets or debt from you, has a history of domestic violence, or is refusing to reach reasonable compromises, it will likely be in you and your children’s best interests to pursue a contested divorce.
If you are interested in an uncontested divorce in Texas, our firm is here to support and guide you through that process. Contact Cynthia Tracy, Attorney at Law, P.C. today at (281) 612-5443 to schedule a consultation.