Tinero, Aharonov and Associates Tinero, Aharonov and Associates A Family Law Practice, LLP

Achievement divorce settlement can help with avoiding trial

The process of getting divorced in California, including in Los Angeles, can naturally be complicated, and having to go to trial can complicate it even more. After all, divorce trial is often characterized by acrimony and hostility. However, the reality is that the majority of divorce cases result in out-of-court settlements.

A settlement outside of court is possible if two spouses can reach an agreement regarding the most essential issues of the divorce. Settlements can be achieved through informal negotiations or via an alternative dispute resolution process, such as collaborative law or mediation. At the end of the negotiation or alternative dispute resolution process, the spouses' decisions are spelled out in a settlement agreement that is then submitted to a divorce judge.

After the judge receives the written agreement, he or she may ask a handful of factual questions and ensure that both parties comprehend the agreement. Both parties must also acknowledge that they voluntarily signed it. If the negotiation process was handled fairly, court approval of the agreement is almost always granted.

Even if the two spouses cannot agree on every aspect of their divorce, they may still be able to achieve a partial settlement. The remainder of the issues that are unresolved will simply go to the court to be resolved. These issues may include child custody or spousal support, for instance. An attorney in Los Angeles can help with conducting negotiations and navigating alternative dispute resolution processes -- in addition to representing his or her clients in court if a trial is necessary -- to help someone achieve the most personally favorable outcome possible.

Source: findlaw.com, "Settlement Agreements and Court Approval", Accessed on Oct. 7, 2017

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