There are two main types of divorce: uncontested divorce and contested divorce. With an uncontested divorce, the spouses are amenable to divorce and have no outstanding child custody or property issues to settle, either because they have no children and marital property or they have already entered into an agreement. These divorces are quick and painless.
However, contested divorces are long and drawn out. They are usually costly, stressful, and emotional. In addition, if the parties refuse to agree on how to divide assets or handle custody and visitation, the court has to sort these issues out for them. This can lead to a result that is even more undesirable than any decision that the parties would have arrived to on their own through compromise.
Most couples going through divorce hire their own divorce attorneys. Family law and property law are so complex that it is very impractical and ill-advised to proceed with a contested divorce without legal counsel. Naturally, divorces can be incredibly costly. Unlike a civil lawsuit where you hope for a big fat check at the end, you may not get a windfall of money in a divorce. Even though you may not walk away from the divorce with a ton of money, you still have you pay your lawyer’s hourly fees.
There are two types of early neutral evaluation – social and financial. Social ENEs focus on child custody and visitation. Judges strongly recommend this form of ENE to parents because lengthy divorce trials often put extreme stress on the children. Since social ENEs focus on non-financial issues, they generally involve two neutral arbiters – one male and one female. Financial ENEs focus on assets and finances, such as alimony, division of property, and child support. These types of ENS typically involve one neutral arbiter.
You will still likely need the assistance of a divorce lawyer for an early neutral evaluation. A divorce lawyer will do all of the work for you, including gathering all of your documents, organizing your action plan, and speaking on your behalf in a clear manner. In addition, your lawyer is hired to represent your best interests, so there is no worry that the lawyer will accept the first compromise offered in hopes of ending the case early.
Last Modified: 10-05-2015 03:06 AM PDTLaw Library Disclaimer
We've helped more than 4 million clients find the right lawyer – for free. Present your case online in minutes. LegalMatch matches you to pre-screened lawyers in your city or county based on the specifics of your case. Within 24 hours experienced local lawyers review it and evaluate if you have a solid case. If so, attorneys respond with an offer to represent you that includes a full attorney profile with details on their fee structure, background, and ratings by other LegalMatch users so you can decide if they're the right lawyer for you.