If your spouse has decided they want out of the marriage, you can either contest it or try to work with them for a fair solution.

Let’s be perfectly clear: You can’t stop your spouse from obtaining a divorce. No matter how distasteful or wrong you find the whole situation, your spouse can eventually obtain a no-fault divorce simply by claiming that your marital relationship is irretrievably broken.

“Contesting the divorce” doesn’t mean challenging your spouse’s right to a divorce or stopping it from going forward. However, it will likely slow the divorce down. A divorce is said to be contested when the couple are unable to agree on specific important terms and have to let a judge settle the issues.

Here’s why an uncontested divorce can be to your advantage:

  • You can move through the divorce faster, with less expense. An uncontested divorce usually comes with lower court costs and attorney fees and fewer complications.
  • You can tailor your divorce agreement to your individual needs. This may be particularly important particularly in cases where spousal support and child custody are an issue. Once a judge gets involved, the couple generally loses all control over their situation and are saddled with a “one-size-fits-all” solution.
  • You can preserve a better working relationship with your spouse once the marriage is over. Working together now can help you learn how to effectively negotiate important issues later, especially if you have minor children.

Uncontested divorces aren’t for everyone. If your spouse is being uncooperative, punitive or deceitful, you probably won’t benefit from an uncontested divorce. If you think that an uncontested divorce could be right for you, however, it is definitely something to explore.