Whether in the checkout line at the grocery store or at a gas station counter, most people have seen magazine covers raving about the latest celebrity's divorce battle in court. While litigation is of course sometimes necessary for New York couples, a mutually agreeable divorce settlement can be possible without having to go to court. Rarely -- if ever -- is litigation the first step on the path to a successful divorce.
While some couples may have extenuating circumstances that require the first stop to be litigation, it doesn't happen often. Additionally, fighting it out in the courtroom can be just one more added expense -- one that most celebrities may be able to afford, but which may be more difficult for the average person. Instead, cooperation may be a more productive way to deal with certain issues.
When divorcing parents cooperate, it may be easier to hammer out a child custody agreement that focuses on the best interest of any children involved. Even if the couple can't reach an agreement themselves, mediation is often a successful tool that can be utilized before heading to court. Some parents find these options to be more to their liking, as fighting over custody leaves the final decision in the hands of a judge.
Alternative dispute resolutions can be a successful and more productive approach to divorce for many New York couples. Although it may be tempting to look to a favorite celebrity and mirror how he or she handled a divorce, doing so may not be in a couple's or child's best interest. For some, court may ultimately be the only option. However, attempting to settle any disputes before heading into litigation may be beneficial.
Source: The Huffington Post, "Divorcing Parents: Avoid the Celebrity Path. Don't Blindly Go to Court", Rosalind Sedacca, Dec. 22, 2014