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Laura Dale & Associates, P.C.

Pros and cons to settling or litigation in a divorce

The choice of agreeing to a settlement or going to litigation can be difficult for people who are getting a divorce in Houston. Negotiations may have broken down, and it could appear as though there is no room for further compromise. However, going to court may not be worth the costs in time, money or emotional fallout.

Litigation means waiting for a court date that could be set months in the future. The time it will take to prepare for the case must also be taken into account. Litigation can be significantly more expensive than negotiation, climbing into five or even six figures. However, making the decision to go to court might be the right one if it does not appear that any more progress can be made in negotiation and a person is not willing to accept the terms of property division or child custody offered.

It is important to not underestimate how stressful litigation can be. It could stretch over months or even years. When an attorney needs information for the court, it may be necessary to provide it immediately even if the person is working or caring for children at the time. People who have a strong case might still want to pursue litigation if it is the only possibility for getting their preferred outcome.

In Texas, property is supposed to be divided equally. This means that if a couple goes to court, a judge may split marital property 50-50. Negotiation can give couples the opportunity to reach a more flexible solution. For example, some couples agree that one person will take certain assets and the other will take other assets of a similar value instead of splitting them. In high net worth divorces, business ownership and other complex assets could add complications to property division.

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