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Uncontested vs. Contested Divorce in New Jersey: What You Need to Know

Navigating Divorce in New Jersey: Uncontested vs. Contested

Divorce proceedings in New Jersey can take various forms, each with its own set of complexities and considerations. Understanding the different approaches to a divorce is crucial for individuals navigating this challenging process. 

In this blog post, divorce attorney Blake W. Rush explores the key distinctions between uncontested and contested divorces in New Jersey, providing valuable insights to help you make informed decisions about your legal strategy.

Uncontested Divorce: An Amicable Resolution

Uncontested divorce refers to a situation in which both spouses mutually agree to end their marriage and are able to resolve all related issues. This divorce resolution typically involves less time, expense, and emotional strain than contested divorces that ultimately require a trial. Ideally, all divorces will be resolved as “uncontested.” This means that the parties will reach a settlement, forgoing a costly, stressful trial. While each party may have representation, spouses can reach important compromises to reach an “uncontested” resolution. 

Key Benefits of Uncontested Divorce:

  • Cost-Effectiveness: Uncontested resolutions are often more cost-effective than divorce trials since they involve minimal legal fees and court expenses.
  • Time Efficiency: Resolving issues outside of court can expedite the divorce process, allowing both parties to move forward with their lives more quickly.
  • Privacy: Uncontested divorces are conducted in a private setting, offering spouses greater confidentiality compared to contested proceedings held in open court.

Contested Divorce: Addressing Disputes Through Litigation

Contested divorces occur when the parties are unable to reach a settlement on all of the issues in their case. While it should be every divorce litigant’s goal to resolve their case via “uncontested” settlement, the key to obtaining the best result is to prepare as if your case will proceed to a trial. Experienced attorneys are well-versed in how to frame your position on each issue to obtain the best results in negotiations. However, when negotiations fail, litigation is required to reach a conclusion. Common areas of contention in contested divorces include child custody, asset division, spousal support, and parenting plans.

Key Features of Contested Divorce:

  • Court Involvement: Contested divorces involve court proceedings, including a trial, where a judge will make decisions on unresolved issues based on evidence presented by both parties.
  • Higher Costs: Contested divorces tend to be more expensive due to legal fees, court costs, and the potential need for expert witnesses or forensic evaluations.
  • Lengthy Process: The litigation process in contested divorces can be lengthy, often spanning several months or even years, depending on the complexity of the case and court backlog.
  • Increased Stress: Litigation can intensify emotional strain and conflict between spouses, making it more challenging to achieve amicable resolutions and co-parent effectively post-divorce.

Contact Our Office Today For a Consultation With Our Experienced NJ Divorce Lawyer!

When going through a divorce, you need an experienced and knowledgeable attorney on your side to guide you through the process. Attorney Blake W. Rush at the Law Office of Blake W. Rush has more than 18 years of experience representing spouses in both amicable and contested divorces throughout New Jersey and Eastern Pennsylvania and has been board-certified as a Matrimonial Law Attorney by the New Jersey Supreme Court. 

Give our firm a call at (903) 713-9800 or visit our website to contact us and learn more about how we can help you.

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