Going through a lengthy, drawn-out divorce can take an immense emotional and financial toll. As Neol Gallagher said: Divorce is a long, drawn-out process, so it affects the mood. When the divorce process drags on for months or years, it prevents you from moving forward and starting fresh. You remain stuck in limbo, unable to heal and plan for your new future.
A prolonged divorce also drains your bank account. When lawyers are heavily involved over an extended period, the costs add up quickly. Legal fees, expert witnesses, paperwork, and other expenses continue to grow as time goes on.
In addition, communication often suffers in a lengthy divorce. With lawyers acting as intermediaries, direct communication with your former partner breaks down. This can increase animosity and make reaching agreements even more difficult.
Why You Should Take Control from the Start?
Rather than resigning yourself to a slow, painful divorce, you can take proactive steps to move the process along. By taking charge from the very beginning, you can avoid unnecessary delays and reach resolution faster.
When you take control, you can set the pace and timeline for negotiations and agreements. You don’t have to wait around for your lawyer or spouse’s lawyer to take action. You can create momentum to finalise the key issues efficiently.
Taking charge early also reduces costs in the long run. The sooner you can reach agreements, the less you’ll have to pay in legal fees over time. And it allows you to move on with your life sooner rather than remaining stuck in divorce limbo.
Take a Proactive Approach
Seek Amicable Separation Before Involving Lawyers
One proactive step is to discuss amicable separation terms with your former partner before getting lawyers involved. See if you can mutually agree on central issues like asset division, spousal support, child custody arrangements, etc.
Bringing in lawyers too early can set an adversarial tone that makes compromise difficult. By starting off collaboratively, you lay the groundwork for quick negotiations down the road.
Make a Sensible Financial Offer Quickly
Shortly after consulting your lawyer, take the initiative to make a sensible financial offer for settlement. Don’t let your lawyer drag their feet in making an initial offer. Putting a reasonable offer on the table early catalyses serious negotiations.
If your initial offer is fair and thoughtful, your spouse will likely make a counteroffer, moving talks forward. Don’t wait weeks or months to get the ball rolling – taking control means making an opening offer right away. In turn – protecting your financial future.
Set Deadlines for Agreements
To keep forward momentum, set firm deadlines for reaching agreements at each stage of the divorce. For example, set a two-week deadline to agree on asset division, then a one-month deadline for spousal and child support.
Setting ambitious but doable deadlines applies constructive pressure to finalise key agreements. It shows you are serious about efficient progress and avoid stalling tactics.
Prioritise Compromise and Collaboration
Mediation and Collaborative Divorce
To expedite your divorce, make compromise and collaboration priorities from the start. Consider alternatives to litigation like mediation or collaborative divorce.
In mediation, you work with a neutral third party to discuss issues and reach agreements. The mediator facilitates communication and helps you find common ground.
Collaborative divorce takes a team approach, with you, your spouse, and both lawyers committing to settle out of court. Everyone works together transparently to reach a fair resolution.
Both options lead to quicker, more amicable outcomes than prolonged litigation. They keep communication open and solution-focused.
Find Mutual Solutions With Your Ex
Even without formal mediation, look for areas of compromise with your former partner. Identify priorities on both sides and see where you can find the middle ground.
Listen sincerely to your spouse’s perspective and desires for the divorce settlement. Be willing to bend on less critical points to build goodwill.
Compromising requires setting aside anger about the past. Focus on pragmatic solutions that let you both emerge from the divorce feeling heard and respected.
Keep Communication Respectful
Amicable communication is essential for quick compromise. Always interact calmly and respectfully with your ex during the divorce process, even when tensions run high.
Name-calling, passive aggression, or dredging up past grievances will only delay progress. Maintain composure and stick to current issues. Your tone can have a big impact on facilitating agreements.
Move Forward Quickly
Don’t Let Lawyers Slow Things Down
Once you have lawyers, don’t let them dictate an overly languid pace. Convey your desire to move efficiently towards settlement. Push them to review agreements quickly and keep things moving forward.
If your lawyer seems prone to unnecessary delays, consider finding one more aligned with your goal of expediency. Look for lawyers experienced in mediation and collaborative divorce.
Lighten the Mood During Negotiations
During challenging negotiations, inject some levity and warmth when appropriate. This can ease tensions when talks get stuck. A little humour and friendliness can go a long way.
When things get tense, suggest taking a short break to clear heads. Bringing the tension down will help lead to positive outcomes faster.
Finalise Agreements to Avoid Delays
As you reach agreements in principle, move promptly to finalise the specifics in writing. Don’t let critical points languish without documentation.
Follow up diligently on any open items or next steps discussed. Don’t allow yourselves to backslide on progress made. Keep the momentum going strong until every aspect of the divorce settlement is formally concluded.
By taking proactive control of your divorce from the very beginning, you can minimise delays and reach resolution faster. This saves time, money, and emotional energy.
Setting the pace, compromising quickly, and finalising agreements promptly leads to an efficient and amicable process. You deserve a quick and painless divorce so you can move forward with your life on your own terms.
About Chris Sweetman
Chris Sweetman is an independent family solicitor and director of Fair Result – An award-winning law firm who pride themselves on using innovative ways to help clients through the stress and complications of a marriage breakdown.
Chris can be contacted at 07500933818 or via email email@example.com.