Uncontested Vs. Contested Divorces

Uncontested vs. Contested Divorces – They’re Different!

Uncontested vs. contested divorces are two different approaches to ending a marriage, and they differ significantly in terms of the level of conflict and court involvement. Here’s an overview of how they differ.

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Uncontested Divorce

  • Mutual Agreement: In an uncontested divorce, both spouses agree to the terms of the divorce without significant disagreements. This includes decisions regarding the division of property, child custody and support, spousal support (alimony), and other relevant issues.
  • Less Conflict: Uncontested divorces generally involve less conflict and animosity between spouses since they are willing to work together to reach an agreement. It can be a more amicable and cost-effective option.
  • Faster Process: Since there are no disputes to resolve in court, uncontested divorces tend to be quicker and less time-consuming than contested divorces. In many cases, it can be completed without a lengthy court battle.
  • Lower Costs: Legal fees and court costs are often lower in uncontested divorces because there’s less need for extensive litigation, negotiations, and court appearances.
  • Reduced Stress: Uncontested divorces can be less emotionally taxing on both spouses and any children involved, as they avoid the confrontations and uncertainty that come with contested divorces.
  • Private Settlement: Most of the divorce agreement is negotiated privately between the spouses and their respective attorneys, and it’s then presented to the court for approval.

Contested Divorce

  • Disagreements: In a contested divorce, spouses are unable to agree on one or more critical issues, such as property division, child custody, visitation, spousal support, or child support. These disputes often require court intervention to resolve.
  • Higher Conflict: Contested divorces are typically characterized by higher levels of conflict, with both parties having differing opinions and interests. This can lead to a more adversarial and emotionally draining process.
  • Longer Process: Contested divorces can take significantly longer to resolve due to the need for court hearings, legal motions, discovery, and negotiations between attorneys.
  • Higher Costs: Contested divorces tend to be more expensive because of the extended legal process and the need for legal representation in court. Expert witnesses and other professionals may also be involved.
  • Court Involvement: The court plays a more significant role in a contested divorce, as a judge may need to make decisions on disputed issues when the spouses cannot reach an agreement.
  • Public Record: Since contested divorces involve court proceedings, the details of the divorce become a matter of public record, which can lead to a loss of privacy.

Ultimately, whether a divorce is uncontested or contested depends on the specific circumstances of the marriage and the willingness of both spouses to cooperate and reach agreements.

Uncontested divorces are generally preferable when feasible, as they tend to be less costly, quicker, and less emotionally taxing. However, in cases of significant disagreement or complex issues, a contested divorce may be necessary to protect one’s rights and interests.

It’s essential to consult with a low-cost divorce attorney if you are in basic agreement concerning the terms of your divorce.



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I was very fortunate to have Mary as my attorney. Court is a hard enough place to be. Not only did Mary give me a 100% she also listened to me and that was important. Had a great out come. Thank you!
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