Generally there are two ways to go about resolving the issues in a divorce: negotiation or litigation. In negotiation, parties strive to reach agreement, and litigation involves going to trial where a judge decide on the issues. Negotiations take place outside of the courtroom and may be between the attorneys involved in the litigation, mediation, or collaboration. Litigation has traditionally been used to resolve the issues in a divorce.
The litigation of family law matters is inherently adversarial, stressful, time consuming and costly. For many individuals, contested litigation is the only option they consider to resolve their disputes.
Litigation is the process by which a family law matter is resolved with the court. The litigation process is used when two individuals cannot resolve the issues through any other process. A judge makes all decisions in a litigated matter. The judge's decisions are reflected in a court order. This order is legally binding, and both parties must comply with the order as it is written.
The litigation process begins when one party files a complaint with the court. The opposing party then has to file an answer to the complaint. The next step in the process is referred to as discovery. Discovery is the gathering of any evidence that may support a party’s case. This information is generally provided as written documentation. Both parties are obligated to provide full disclosure of all information that is requested. After discovery is gathered, both parties present their case before a judge. The judge then makes the final decisions.
To find out more about Litigation, call our Ashburn, VA office at (703) 443-4762 or Schedule a Consultation.