Marriage is one of the oldest and must universal institutions in the world, designed to unite a man and woman into a single household that will raise children. Some nations today have also legalized same-sex marriage, and same-sex households are known to adopt children. But today in the 21st century, divorce is also common, when a marriage legally ends. Some divorces are expensive and messy affairs, were child custody lawyers, a court of law, family attorneys, and other divorce lawyers are involved. But not all divorces are like that, and an uncontested divorce with children is relatively straightforward. An uncontested divorce does not require lawyers or a court, and the divorcing spouses may negotiate and settle the divorce for themselves. What is there to know about an uncontested divorce with children, and when are family lawyers or divorce attorneys needed?

Why Divorce Happens

Some reasons for a divorce, such as an uncontested divorce with children, are fairly simple. Some married partners may realize that they really do not have enough compatibility or mutual interest, and they may have very different lifestyles and spending habits. In other cases, a divorce is caused by something more traumatic, and studies have ranked some of the most common causes of divorce. The leading cause is infidelity, when one spouse is unfaithful to the other, and if marriage counseling cannot help, then divorce papers might be next. Meanwhile, a spouse may face divorce papers if they are abusing drugs or alcohol, which can put a serious financial strain on the household and cause a personality change (or even job loss). Some spouses are violently, verbally, or sexually abusive towards other members of the household, and that may very well prompt a divorce. In some cases, the other spouse may relocate to a private residence during the divorce process, for safety’s sake (and they might bring their children with them).

An Uncontested Divorce With Children

As described earlier, not all divorces are huge and expensive affairs, though even a simple divorce requires some careful planning and clear communication. If the divorce does not call for lawyers or court, the spouses may undergo an uncontested divorce, where they will personally negotiate the terms of the divorce between each other. Rather than hire an attorney, they may hire a mediator, a neutral third party who will help draw out good ideas from each spouse and keep communication smooth and clear. That mediator will not offer their own ideas or opinions, though, unless asked. Instead, they maintain strong communication between the spouses. And in the case of an uncontested divorce with children, the parents will factor that in too, and they might already have a good idea of where the children should live. It may be likely (nothing is being guaranteed here) that the children will end up with a parent who has a stable income and lives close to good schools and other features. If the children are old enough, such as adolescents, the divorcing parents may consult their children about their own preferences. Finally, take note that these mediated, uncontested divorces tend to be much cheaper and more private than those that go to court.

Divorce and Court

Meanwhile, other divorces certainly do call for legal assistance, and the two divorcing spouses may bitterly contest just about anything, from child custody to a house, a car, bank accounts, or even family heirlooms and a privately owned business. One spouse will turn to a divorce law firm and hire a lawyer, then file the divorce paperwork. The other spouse may then hire their own attorney to represent their interests, and the two parties will battle over the divorce’s terms through their lawyers. A spouse who has suffered abuse might interact with the other spouse only through their lawyer, if they so choose.

Such divorces can be expensive, and will be public as they go through court, but this is probably necessary if the spouses cannot agree on an uncontested divorce. Child custody debate will call for family lawyers or child custody lawyers, such as determining where the child will live and who pays for child support, and to what extent. If the child is aged 12 or over, he or she may speak privately with the judge about their living arrangement preferences.