A contested divorce occurs when on the partners to the marriage will not agree to the terms of the divorce that the other partner requests. The bulk of divorces are non contested and sail through quite easily, contested divorces most often arise when the couple cannot agree of such important matters as primary custody of the children, division of assets and debt, child support, etc. When a divorce action is contested Alpharetta divorce attorneys are faced with a long, complex, drawn out legal process that may end up in family court where a judge will attempt to get an amicable settlement or make a ruling based on his best judgment.
Even when the divorce is not contested, the proceedings are incredibly difficult for the parties involved. There is the inevitable emotional stress but there are also pressures while attempting to come to terms with the division of marital property. At times, especially if there are significant assets, it will be simply impossible to one or the other party to accept the demands of the other. A contested divorce begins when the party being sued for divorce receives the filing and finds that the demands of the party filing for divorce are unacceptable. In cases like this the spouse that is being sued can have his or her attorney file for a court hearing where the grounds can be contested in front of a family court judge.
The first step in resolution is usually a preliminary hearing. During this hearing the judge or in many cases a mediator will set out certain parameters concerning the area or areas of dispute, such things as asset distribution, child custody, demands for alimony, etc. As the divorce process proceeds and decisions made in a preliminary hearing carries the force of law; however, when it gets time for the final settlement the judge reserves the right to alter the earlier decisions. A preliminary hearing does little more than to provide short term solutions as the couple and the children will have to live separate lives during these protracted proceedings.
At the conclusion of the preliminary hearing the Alpharetta divorce attorneys that represent the parties gather evidence to present to the court to ensure a final decision. The attorneys often offer the court details of the bank accounts, credit history; a list of property owned as well as financial statements. When the care and maintenance of the children are under dispute the court often calls witnesses who will attest the evidence on the historic care of the children as well as their psychological well being.