Is an Agreed Divorce Right for Me?

Is an Agreed Divorce Right for Me? The way that a divorce proceeds is typically based on the couples involved. When the former partners cannot come to a mutual agreement and do not want to meet each other halfway, the divorce proceedings can turn ugly. However, there are some couples who want the same things, or are at least able to work together to achieve their post-divorce goals.

Some spouses want to end the marriage in the most harmonious way possible. Couples who want this result from their divorce may want to consider filing for an agreed divorce, which in Tennessee is a simplified version of an uncontested divorce. Today, we want to delve a little deeper into what that means, so you will know how to prepare.

What is an uncontested divorce?

In an uncontested divorce, both spouses reach a mutual agreement about all issues in the divorce. Couples who want to file for an uncontested divorce must reach agreement about the following matters:

When you and your spouse reach an agreement on all of these issues, you do not have to spend time going to court. Instead, you will have to wait for a judge to approve your settlement agreement and final divorce. Once the judge approves your agreement, you and your spouse will have to wait for the designated time period before your divorce is finalized.

As easy as an uncontested divorce sounds, every family is different. For example, a couple with no children will probably have an easier time coming to an agreement than a couple with children: there’s less to do, so to speak, and it’s possible there’s less stress. Even if couples do not come to an agreement about all matters right away, they have the option of speaking with a Maryville divorce lawyer to help mediate the process.

What are the benefits of an agreed or uncontested divorce?

An uncontested divorce comes with several benefits. Some of these benefits include:

  • Saving time. Filing for an uncontested divorce allows you and your spouse to save as much time as possible. Instead of spending time coming to court and meeting with lawyers to discuss the matters of your divorce, you can file a divorce settlement to speed the process up. If you and your spouse want to resolve matters as quickly as possible, an uncontested divorce can help you with that goal.
  • Saving money. Another benefit of an uncontested divorce is the amount of money that you and your spouse will save. If you want to hire a divorce attorney to assist you with the process, you are more than welcome to do so. However, you and your spouse can just pay filing fees for your divorce settlement and proceed with the process.
  • Reducing the amount of emotional distress. Another significant benefit of an uncontested divorce is the reduction of emotional distress. Being able to end the marriage in an agreeable manner helps to alleviate the stress associated with the divorce process. The way that you and your spouse cooperate during the divorce can set the tone for how your family will proceed moving forward.

When an agreed divorce is not the right option for you

Even though an uncontested divorce is an ideal situation, many couples find it difficult to come to a mutual agreement about every matter in their marriage. There are also some exceptions where an uncontested divorce would not be beneficial for married couples.

There is a history of domestic violence

A married couple where one spouse is being physically, sexually, or psychologically abused by their partner would not benefit from an uncontested divorce. One of the most dangerous times – for women in particular – is when a relationship is coming to an end. That is usually when a partner will attempt something drastic like taking the woman’s life. Based on the imbalance of power, a married couple with an abusive partner is highly unlikely to come to a mutual agreement in a divorce.

You and your spouse are in high-conflict

There are many couples who just cannot come to a mutual agreement in a divorce. Some marriages have become so tumultuous that the couple cannot even speak to one another without arguing. If you and your spouse are in this predicament, it would be better to file for a contested divorce and allow the courts to take the lead.

You have substantial assets to divide

Even if you and your spouse are on good terms, the process of actually coming to a mutual agreement can be overwhelming. You and your spouse may have high-value assets that you do not know how to properly evaluate. You may find the paperwork confusing and have an issue understanding the legal terms. If you end up making a mistake on your divorce settlement agreement, it can cause a rift between you and your spouse and you may have no legal recourse without an attorney.

If you have a difficult time believing that your spouse is being honest with you, all of the secrets can be revealed during the discovery phase of a contested divorce. You and your spouse are required to submit all assets during the discovery phase. If your spouse is hiding any secret accounts or secret assets that you were not aware of, these accounts will be discovered and evaluated during the divorce process.

Getting divorced is complicated, but choosing the right divorce lawyer should not be. At Shepherd & Long, P.C., we offer honest and thoughtful counsel that can help guide you through the divorce process. Call our law firm at 865-982-8060, or submit our contact form to schedule an appointment at our Maryville office. We serve families in Blount County and throughout East Tennessee.