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Uncontested Divorce
What’s The Difference Between Contested And Uncontested Divorce?
03 Mar, 2024

What’s The Difference Between Contested And Uncontested Divorce?

If you are facing a divorce, the matter of whether it will be contested or uncontested may be weighing on you, but you might not have a clear understanding of what this even means. A better understanding of the distinction may help you get a better handle on your own divorce and how it is likely to be resolved. One of the most important steps you can take in the divorce process is consulting with an experienced Illinois divorce attorney early on.

Resolving the Terms of Your Divorce

The terms of your divorce directly relate to whether your divorce will be contested or uncontested. In order for your divorce to be finalized, each of the following that applies in your situation must be resolved:

If you and your soon-to-be ex are able to hammer out each of these terms between yourselves – no matter how you get there – your divorce is uncontested because you won’t need the court to intervene regarding the term or terms that remain unresolved.

Negotiations Options

When it comes to negotiating the terms of your divorce, you have options, including:

  • You and your ex can do as much negotiating between yourselves as possible – checking in with your dedicated divorce attorney to ensure the terms you land on protect your legal and financial rights.
  • You and your ex can allow your respective divorce attorneys to negotiate on behalf of each side’s best interests. 
  • You can engage in an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) option, such as mediation, that allows you to explore more in-depth negotiations. 

If – at this point – one or more of your divorce terms remains undetermined, you may need the court’s intervention – and this is when your divorce becomes contested. 

Contested Divorce

In a contested divorce, you abdicate your decision-making authority as it relates to the unresolved term or terms, and the process is likely to be both lengthier and costlier. This said, however, resolving the terms of your divorce solely to avoid going to court is unlikely to do you any favors. If your divorcing spouse refuses to enter into fair negotiations, turning to the court to rule on the matter may be your best option. 

A Note on Heading to Court

You and your soon-to-be ex can settle whatever divorce terms are pending up until the point that the court issues its final decision, which means that, even if your divorce goes to court, there is still a possibility of it remaining uncontested. In fact, the thought of going to trial can be motivating in terms of helping your divorcing spouse embrace the negotiation process.

Look to an Experienced Illinois Divorce Attorney for the Help You Need

If you’re facing a divorce and are concerned that it may be contested, the skilled Illinois divorce attorneys at SLG Family Law have the legal insight and drive to help. While the best way to protect your financial and parental rights may be by proceeding to court, we are committed to helping you make the right decisions for you – whatever they might be – throughout the process. For more information, please don’t wait to contact us today.



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