What if my attorney is dragging out the divorce?
A divorce is often a frustrating, arduous process, especially when there’s a great deal of contesting or complications. Divorce agreements involve many different factors. They’re basically a legal way of untangling people’s lives. Financial issues and child custody agreements are some of the most hotly contested details in a divorce agreement. But divorces can sometimes be prolonged for other reasons. Either spouse’s attorney might intentionally cause a delay in the proceedings. This might occur for several different reasons.
It’s common for an attorney to delay a proceeding when the finalization of the divorce is undergoing negotiation. The primary reason for holding out is often financial. In addition, in certain states that allow legal separation, either attorney may have the goal of convincing their client that legal separation is the best step for them.
Formal legal separation allows the spouses to have two full years to decide whether or not they will divorce. It also allows either spouse to begin “no fault” divorce proceedings following the expiration of the time period. This might benefit the lawyers thanks to adding more billable hours. If a couple separates and then divorces, rather than just divorcing, the proceedings will last much longer.
This tactic is often used by larger law firms that are focused more on money than clients. They might not have their focus on finalizing a divorce agreement. It helps to make sure your lawyer is experienced in divorce cases, able to successfully negotiate, and passionate about advocating for you.
Your Attorney’s Focus
When you’re in the middle of a divorce, you and your spouse will often be focused on finishing the proceedings as fast as possible so you can move on. Many divorcing couples want their divorce to be finalized so they can get remarried. But the attorney’s job is to make sure the divorce agreement they negotiate reflects the best interests of their client.
The attorney needs to take into account all the details that the divorcing couple may not be thinking about. They need to consider the needs of any dependent children, the equal distribution of property, and the financial stability and security of their client. If either spouse is impatient, the final agreement might be found disproportionately in favor of one of the spouses.
If you’re in a hurry to settle your case, you may be frustrated with the meticulousness of your lawyer. But keep in mind the amount of information your attorney is juggling. They may be struggling to negotiate proper terms of an agreement.
In New York, the state grants divorces if they meet certain reasons. Every case must qualify. Certain divorce cases might cause one spouse to pay increased alimony to the other due to discrepancies in their income. These types of cases are often hotly contested and can involve many sessions of careful negotiation.
Mediating and Communicating
There are many divorce proceedings in which both couples are agreeable about the divorce. They may be able to communicate in a civil way that is at least partially constructive. When this is the case, the attorney may make an itemized list of all the details that need to be considered in the agreement. Both representative attorneys will go back and forth with their settlement negotiations until they find something that is equitable for all parties.
Negotiations tend to take a long time when there are complicating factors. Dependent children are the most common complicating factor. Parents are aware that their divorce may have a negative impact on their child, and so they try to work together for the mental health of the child. When everyone has the best interests of the child at heart, this can help smooth negotiations.
When divorces are finalized, child custody tends to be the most complicated issue. The spouses need to devise a workable parenting plan that’s good for their child, but they also need to begin leading their separate lives. If attorneys are purposefully delaying the proceedings for no reason, a couple may negotiate child custody terms without them.
In many cases, the best answer to a dallying lawyer is to replace them with a new lawyer. This will cause the proceedings to speed up significantly. It helps for the divorcing spouses to request a mediation meeting so that the court doesn’t hand down an arbitrary, unsatisfying ruling.
When a married couple is immature during divorce proceedings, the judge tends to treat them like children. Being cooperative is much more likely to yield an ideal outcome.