10 Reasons Why an Amicable Divorce can go Sideways

Posted:  Oct 17, 2019

There are no guarantees when it comes to a marriage lasting happily ever after regardless of our early hopes. Unfortunately, divorce rates are increasing among spouses at age 50 or older and may ultimately be the soundest route for partners at any time throughout a union.

Primarily, most couples are intent on avoiding drama associated with divorce and want to make a separation as smooth as possible. Indeed, who wants to spend thousands of dollars on legal fees and disrupt their children’s lives with a messy divorce? Therefore, it’s imperative to strive for an amicable divorce, although not always easy.

For instance, the results of a publication’s 2016 survey of legal fees reveals Canadian lawyers reported charging an average $1,772 in total fees for an uncontested divorce and $15,306 for contested divorces. However, even an uncontested divorce is at risk of going awry. What exactly makes an amicable divorce turn sideways?

1.     When a soon to be ex-spouse makes one too many major changes during a separation, trust may falter, resulting in misunderstandings and increased legal fees during negotiations.

2.     If a client selects a lawyer whose values are incongruent to his or her own values, it can negatively affect the outcome of the divorce. It pays to find a lawyer you feel comfortable and confident.

3.     Partners should never keep hidden agendas. Remain transparent with an open mind and be ready to compromise.

4.     Without mediation, partners may not take the opportunity to communicate essential issues requiring resolution. In this case, a mediation lawyer can help.

5.     In the extreme case of domestic violence, professional help should always be sought out. Emotions can run high and people do, unfortunately, make poor choices. A legal professional can help you stay protected by the law.

6.     When a tough solution is proposed by one spouse, a lawyer can help to focus on the big picture to arrive at a satisfying alternative to reach your goals.

7.     Endless negotiations from not knowing what the other party wants can quickly put you into debt. Know what your soon-to-be ex wants, needs, or may be willing to compromise on. This enables your council to help you get what you want and need to remain on course.

8.     If you rely on inexpert legal advice from say, a friend who went through a divorce or an online search, you will not possess crucial facts specific to your circumstances. A professional can help position you to fight for your needs and helps you decide on the ideal course of action for you, not someone else.

9.     If both spouses are treating their children like possessions, a divorce is more likely to turn sideways. Instead of wasting time and money on fault-finding, parties must be pragmatic and keep children’s interests at the forefront.

1   When each spouse is determined to reach realistic solutions and take winning and losing out of the equation, a divorce is more likely to result in an amicable conclusion. It also helps to have a lawyer focused on a ‘win-win’ outcome for all concerned.

Understanding the complexities of marriage laws are unquestionably better left to a knowledgeable family lawyer. Stevens & Company Law is here to provide you with the best legal assistance to help you travel a smoother pathway through divorce.

Linda King is our lawyer and mediator responsible for Family Law. Certified by the Law Society of BC as a Family Mediator, Linda graduated from the Justice Institute of BC Center for Conflict Resolution specializing in Family Mediation. She is focused on positive negotiations with the aim of ensuring clients boldly move forward with their lives.


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