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Is It Better to Settle a Divorce Out of Court or Go to Trial?

Couple with backs against each other upset

Marriages are meant to last, but sometimes, things just don’t work out. Divorce is a life-changing decision for both spouses and their families, and choosing the right path for your divorce proceedings can impact your life in multiple ways.

When it comes to divorce proceedings, California has a few options. Two of the most common are settling out of court and going to trial. In this blog post, we’ll discuss settling a divorce out of court versus going to trial so that you are better informed to make the best decision for yourself and your family regarding which option is right for you.

How to Determine if You Should Settle Your Divorce Out of Court or Go to Trial

So, what is better, settling out of court or going to trial? The answer is dependent on several factors that are unique to each marriage. While some couples may find their issues can be resolved outside of the court, others may require solutions that can only be found inside a courtroom. Here are a few details about each option:

  • Settling the Divorce Out of Court – Settling a divorce out of court is often referred to as an uncontested divorce. It presents a more cost-effective and timely option as both you and your spouse can reach a mutual agreement and present it to the court for approval. A less expensive option also means that you can retain more money to divide between yourselves or allocate for the well-being of your children. One of the biggest benefits of settling outside of court is that it’s less stressful. The courtroom can be intimidating and emotionally challenging, and a private settlement reduces the level of anxiety and pressure on you, your ex, and your children. It can also be a faster resolution with some out-of-court settlements being resolved in as little as one month.
  • Going to Trial – If you and your partner cannot reach a mutual agreement out of court, the case will go to trial. Going to trial typically takes longer, costs more, and is far more emotionally taxing for everyone involved. However, in some cases, spouses are unable to agree on key matters like child support or property division, and in these cases, going to court is the best option. Divorce trials allow both parties to hire their lawyers, present evidence, and argue their cases. While the court's decision is final, it may also end up having a better outcome for your financial future and the well-being of your children.
  • Mediation – Once the divorce proceedings have begun, couples can opt for mediation. It provides you with an opportunity to resolve your issues collaboratively, with a neutral third party who helps both sides come to an agreement privately. Mediation is a more formal process than an out-of-court settlement but is less expensive than going to trial.

Whatever option you choose, make sure it aligns with your priorities and meets the needs of you, your spouse, and your children.

Whether you need help with a divorce settlement, trial, or mediation, Arnold Law Group, APC has got you covered. Get in touch with us online or give us a call at (559) 900-1263 today for a confidential consultation with our dedicated divorce attorneys.

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