When you finally decide to get a divorce, you probably want to get everything over and done with as soon as possible. Sadly, it will take at least six months to finalize a divorce; sometimes longer if you and your spouse cannot successfully compromise on a settlement. Honesty, quick action, and cooperation are the keys to expediting a divorce, but here are some of the reasons many divorces get stuck in limbo:
1. One party is not willing to cooperate. If your spouse does not want to go through with a divorce or feels bitter and resentful, the stages can drag on and on. He or she may delay responding and wait until the last possible moment to do everything required during the proceedings. Some couples can have a long discussion and come to a reasonable agreement to cooperate, while others may rely on the system to push the case forward. Your attorney can stay on top of the process to expedite it and force it into a court trial if needed.
2. Your legal representative complicates the process. Unfortunately, your legal counsel may try to delay the proceedings. Some divorce attorneys interested in maximizing their own profits will unnecessarily complicate matters. If you feel suspicious towards your current attorney, you may want to consult outside counsel for a second opinion and switch attorneys to speed up the process. Divorce is tough, and you deserve to have competent legal assistance to make the process as painless as possible.
3. The other party “conflicts out” possible attorneys. If your spouse really wants to make the divorce drag on, he or she may meet with several attorneys in the area for a consultation. By doing so, he or she can prevent you from having your first representative of choice, making the process of finding qualified divorce counsel much more difficult.
4. Trying to push a settlement too quickly. Spouses that try to push through the process too quickly could also cause delays, because it often means they are hiding something. You have the right to sift through financial information and work together or in a court setting to agree upon a successful settlement. This diversionary tactic could mean you need to hire a forensic accountant to discover any missing pieces to the puzzle a spouse might try to intentionally cover up.
5. The case is naturally complex. Significant assets, child custody disputes, domestic violence issues, and investigations can all delay a divorce. Between court dates, spouses may need to complete certain actions before the case can move forward. Each step in a complex case can take months to resolve, delaying the overall timeframe for a divorce. Couples who work together as cooperatively as possible can speed up the process significantly. Taking the recommendations of the court and checking up on paperwork and investigative progress can also encourage forward momentum.
People have their reasons for trying to extend a divorce case, although often misguided, and a complicated process can naturally hinder a speedy conclusion. Every case is different, so understanding what your spouse is going through can help you and your attorney decide on the best course of action moving forward.