Heidi E. Opinsky

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Divorce Proceedings: What Are Your Options in NY? │ Heidi Opinsky Law

A comparison of the two primary approaches in New York divorce proceedings, including the benefits and drawbacks of each method, and how to determine which one is right for your unique situation.

With 9% of the population of New York divorced, you’re not alone if you’re also treading this new life chapter. (1) Naturally, you aren’t going to be on fantastic terms with the other party when you are going through a divorce. However, you can try and make the process a lot smoother by involving a legal professional. A qualified divorce attorney can help you decide on major differences and assist in finishing the process fairly and quickly.

Based on the details of your case you may want to proceed with either divorce mediation or divorce litigation. 

Understanding Divorce Mediation

Divorce mediation in New York is a process by which you as a divorcing couple work with a trained mediator to negotiate and reach an agreement on the terms of your divorce. Mediation is a voluntary and confidential process, and it allows you to avoid the time, expense, and emotional strain of a traditional litigated divorce.

During mediation, your mediator acts as a neutral third-party facilitator and helps you both identify and prioritize your needs and interests as fairly as possible. Your mediator may also provide information and guidance about legal issues related to divorces, such as property division, child custody, and spousal support.

If both of you are able to reach an agreement on all issues through mediation, your mediator will draft a written agreement that can be submitted to the court for approval. If you are unable to reach an agreement, you may choose to pursue other options, such as litigation.

Divorce mediation can be a beneficial option for you if you are willing to work together to reach a mutually acceptable resolution, and it can help minimize the financial and emotional costs associated with a litigated divorce. However, in high-conflict cases, it may be better and safer to go with litigation. 

Understanding Divorce Litigation

Divorce litigation in New York is the traditional process of resolving a divorce dispute through the court system. In a litigated divorce, you and your spouse retain your own attorney, and your attorneys engage in the legal process of filing and responding to motions and discovery requests, presenting evidence, and advocating for your position in court.

In a litigated divorce, the court will make decisions on issues such as property division, child custody, and spousal support based on the evidence presented and the relevant laws and regulations. The court’s decisions are binding, and the parties must comply with the court’s orders. You won’t be able to make the decisions yourself.

Divorce litigation can be a lengthy process, and it can be emotionally difficult for the parties involved. However, in some cases, litigation may be necessary if you both are unable to reach an agreement through negotiation or mediation or if there are issues such as domestic violence or substance abuse that require the intervention of the court.

It is important for individuals considering divorce to speak with an experienced attorney to understand their legal rights and options, and to determine the best course of action for their specific situation.

How to Choose Between Divorce Litigation and Divorce Mediation 

Choosing between divorce litigation and divorce mediation is a personal decision that will depend on your specific circumstances, goals, and priorities. 

In a nutshell, here are some factors to consider when deciding which option is best for you:

  1. Communication: If you and your spouse are able to communicate effectively and are willing to work together to reach an agreement, mediation may be a good option. If communication is difficult or there is a high level of conflict, litigation may be necessary.
  2. Control: Mediation allows both parties to maintain more control over the outcome of the divorce, as they are the ones who make the decisions. Litigation, on the other hand, involves handing over control to the court, which will make the final decisions.
  3. Cost: Mediation is generally less expensive than litigation, as it involves fewer court appearances and less time spent on legal proceedings. However, if it doesn’t work out and you end up litigating at the end, the prolonged process will end up costing you a lot more.
  4. Time: Mediation can be completed more quickly than litigation, which can go on for months or even years.
  5. Complexity: If the divorce involves complex financial or legal issues, litigation may be necessary to ensure that your rights and interests are protected.

Ultimately, the decision between divorce litigation and divorce mediation will depend on your specific circumstances and goals. It is important to speak with an experienced attorney who can help you understand your options and guide you through the divorce process.

Connect with Heidi Opinsky, Divorce Lawyer in NY Today

Connect with a divorce lawyer, Heidi Opinsky, at the Law Offices of Heidi Opinsky, LLC, today to get proper legal advice regarding your divorce.

Visit our website to send us a message or call 203-653-3542 now and we will get back to you as soon as possible.