No matter the efforts on you or your spouse’s part, your marriage may not have worked out. Yet, you two might not harbor any ill feelings toward each other. In this case, you will likely want to avoid a contentious divorce and you may want to consider a dissolution instead. Before proceeding with one, it’s important to know how it differs from divorce.
The result of dissolution remains a legal divorce. But the dissolution process bears little semblance to traditional or uncontested proceedings. If you two pursue dissolution, you must be able to agree upon every term and detail regarding your split. You will then record this information in a separation agreement. If you and your spouse have children, you will also need to draft a shared parenting plan to outline custody and visitation arrangements. After filing these documents with a local court, you must wait 30 days before your final dissolution hearing. You and your spouse will follow the documents’ terms if you live separately before your dissolution. But they become legally binding once a judge approves them.
You and your spouse may be parting on amicable terms. Yet, you may not agree on every detail about your split. In this case, you will likely want to pursue a divorce instead of dissolution. During proceedings, you and your spouse may have some say on the terms that comprise your divorce decree – especially if you go through mediation. Yet, if you cannot negotiate certain details, you have the option of litigating them. In either case, a divorce will likely take longer than dissolution. And it will prove costlier as well.
If you and your spouse are parting on civil terms, pursuing dissolution can ease and quicken your split. But if there is any chance for disagreement between you two, a divorce may be a better option. An attorney with family law experience can help you understand what makes sense in your situation.