The divorce process is emotionally and financially taxing as it is. So, most couples settle their concerns privately to avoid costly and time-consuming litigation.
However, despite pursuing alternatives, such as mediation, some spouses still disagree on specific issues. In other cases, domestic violence may have taken a toll on the relationship and both parties simply cannot negotiate in good faith. Thus, the remaining route to reach a resolution is taking the case to trial.
Ways to approach the courtroom with confidence
In New Jersey, an intensive settlement conference aims to prevent a divorce case from going to trial. It entails both parties and their lawyers meeting with the judge to discuss potential compromises.
If spouses cannot resolve their disputes after exhausting all possible actions, the case goes to trial. Both parties can prepare for this final and most significant step in the process through the following ways:
- Set clear goals: A good place to start is to list objectives. It can identify which areas are most important to a spouse and which they are willing to give up or make an arrangement on.
- Gather and review financial documents: Stay organized by creating a list of assets and debts. Make copies of bank statements, tax returns, retirement accounts and other relevant paperwork. Full and honest disclosure of one’s financial status is crucial to help the court assess a fair property division and prevent adverse consequences.
- Collect evidence: In contested cases, such as adultery, proof can help establish a claim. Photos, videos and witness testimonies can help prove a claim and aid in the judge’s evaluation.
While there is no guaranteed way for a divorce trial to yield favorable outcomes, thorough preparation can help both parties clear their minds, calm their nerves, present themselves well before the court and, ultimately, protect their rights.
A support system is at the core of the preparation
More than just a battle against an ex-spouse, a divorce trial is how a person can begin to restructure their life. The court’s decision can significantly impact their future. With so much at stake, both parties cannot afford to embark on this process alone. Besides the emotional support from their loved ones, they can benefit from a legal team to guide them in preparing for their day in court and navigating the complexities of their situation.