Divorces are often portrayed in the media as drawn out and bitter disputes. However, if a couple can work out the major divorce issues themselves, in most cases, a divorce can be finalized quickly and without a trial. Reaching an agreement with your spouse regarding the terms of your divorce can help you avoid the uncertainties of going to court.
To effectively settle your divorce, you and your spouse must be in complete agreement on the major issues related to your divorce. These issues include all aspects of property division, spousal support, and child custody and support, if applicable. If you find that you cannot agree on any element of the divorce, such as who has custody of the children on weekends, you may attempt to resolve it with the assistance of a mediator. Once complete agreement is reached, you may draft and sign a settlement agreement and submit it to the court. The settlement agreement is an enforceable contract that forms the basis of your rights and responsibilities once the divorce is finalized. Before issuing your divorce, a judge will review the agreement to ensure that it is fair to you and your spouse -- and that it promotes the best interests of your children.