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Mediation, collaboration and uncontested divorce

Massachusetts couples who are getting a divorce have options for deciding property division, child custody and support beyond going to court. Mediation, collaboration and an uncontested divorce is often less expensive, less stressful and less time-consuming than litigation. One problem that may arise during litigation is that each person may be angry enough to try to punish the other person through legal means, and this could result in both parties incurring more debt after their divorce than they had to start.

For couples who are in conflict but who want to try to avoid litigation, mediation might be an alternative. A mediator uses conflict resolution techniques to help a couple reach an agreement. Couples who have more issues to work through might take the collaborative approach. This involves bringing in a number of professionals to work with the family on different aspects of the divorce. For example, attorneys, financial advisers and mental health professionals might all participate in a collaborative divorce.

If the two people are able to communicate very effectively and are committed to reaching an agreement, an uncontested divorce could be the simplest and least expensive option. Even couples who have substantial assets to divide and children may be able to have an uncontested divorce.

A person who is considering divorce might want to discuss all of these options with an attorney. In some cases, the only way to resolve a divorce dispute might be through litigation. However, even if a couple is very far apart on issues around child custody and property division, a technique like mediation might bring them closer to agreement. A couple might also resolve some issues and have to go to court to settle others. An attorney might assist a client in developing the best strategy to get the desired outcome.

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