Not only doesn’t divorce have to be a nightmare, but it doesn’t have to take forever either. A surprising number of couples are able to divorce quickly and inexpensively. I am not talking about the kind that go to mills which, using a cookie cutter approach, have office staff generate paperwork that gets bounced by the courts. I’m talking about couples whose issues are not terribly complicated and whose conflict is not terribly deep but who need an agreement that details how the issues of decision-making, parenting time, support and equitable distribution will be handled.
Surely the quickest route is through mediation. I have worked with many couples who come in for a consultation and either extend that hour long enough to give me all the information I need to draft a settlement agreement or come back one more time to do so. After that first meeting they return a week or two later to review the agreement we have drafted in the interim. Following the review in my office they are encouraged to have the agreement reviewed by separate review attorneys before they sign it. In most cases the next time they come in they sign the agreement and all necessary divorce papers. This process can be as short as two weeks. Realistically it usually takes about four weeks to schedule the meetings. Once all the divorce paperwork is signed it is submitted to the Court. It generally takes about three months before a judge signs the divorce judgment.