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I want to divorce. How do I manage that?

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I want to divorce. How do I manage that?

Often the same or similar questions are asked in the case of a divorce. In this article we answer the following question:

Question:

I want to get a divorce, what is the best way to go about it?

Answer:

A divorce can be arranged in various ways. Firstly, a divorce must be pronounced by the court. However, the court’s decision does not mean that you are divorced. Only once the court’s written divorce decree is entered into the marriage register does the divorce become official. This date of registration is the official date of divorce.

Only once the court’s written divorce decree is entered into the marriage register does the divorce become official. To obtain a divorce decree from the court, a petition must first be filed by a lawyer.”

In order to obtain a divorce decree from the court, a petition must be filed with the court. That petition can only be made by a lawyer. This means that you must engage a lawyer in order to obtain a divorce decree.
When you contact one of our family lawyers, we will consider whether you wish to make an appointment with the lawyer on your own behalf or whether you and your partner, from whom you wish to divorce, wish to make an appointment with the lawyer together. If you make an appointment with the lawyer just for yourself, the consequence will be that the other partner will probably an own lawyer to look after his or her interests. This does not automatically result, as many people think, in a messy divorce because the lawyers will start litigating immediately. On the contrary!
We will always first examine whether there is a possibility of settling the consequences of the divorce by mutual agreement with the other partner and his or her lawyer. This often takes the form of a so-called four-way meeting in which both partners and their lawyers discuss a solution. In many cases, the agreements are then made in consultation and laid down in a divorce settlement and parenting plan. In such a case, one of the lawyers does not file a so-called unilateral petition for divorce, but a joint petition for divorce is filed, asking the court to pronounce the divorce and to accept the agreements made by the parties.
In the event that it is not possible to come to an agreement by mutual consent, one of our family lawyers will file a unilateral petition for divorce with the court. In addition to the divorce petition, other requests can be made to the court, such as an application for child and/or spousal maintenance, an application for division of the community of property or settlement of the prenuptial agreement, requests concerning the residence and care of minor children, etc.
If you prefer to go to a lawyer together, the interests of both of you will be represented by one of our lawyers who is also a mediator. After all, according to the rules that apply to them, lawyers are not allowed to represent the interests of two parties at the same time, who may have a conflicting interest. This means that the divorce is settled by means of mediation. The mediator guides the entire process in which agreements are made between the two of you. Because the mediator is also a lawyer, he or she can inform you properly about all the legal aspects of the divorce and eventually also submit a joint petition for divorce when all the agreements have been made. This means that you do not have to go to a (different) lawyer to do this.

“Because the mediator is also a lawyer, he or she can inform you properly about all the legal aspects of the divorce and eventually also submit a joint petition for divorce when all the agreements have been made. This means that you do not have to go to a (different) lawyer to do this.”

Contrary to what many people think, you do not have to be in complete agreement about all the issues that arise in the context of the divorce in order for mediation to be successful. The mediation process is aimed at reaching an agreement on the points on which you do not agree, at providing you with good legal information and at eventually recording all agreements correctly. You can read more about how mediation works in one of the upcoming blogs.

“The mediation process is aimed at reaching an agreement on the points on which you do not agree.”

The lawyers of TEN therefore always consider the best way to settle your divorce in consultation with you. We aim to find a good solution that does justice to all the interests involved. In one case this may mean that you come to an arrangement of all the consequences of the divorce through mediation and in another case it may mean that litigation will be necessary. Even before we decide to go to court, we will always consider whether a solution can be found by mutual agreement. We have lawyers who are trained as specialists in family law and who have extensive experience in divorce counselling. As a result, they are well-informed about all divorce-related issues, whether they concern children or the settlement of a prenuptial agreement involving immovable property, a business or a dispute concerning a settlement clause in the marriage contract.

Divorce or separation: what needs to be arranged?

You and your partner have decided to separate or divorce and you are now wondering what needs to be arranged. On the government website, after filling in a number of questions, you will get an overview of all the matters that need to be arranged and which apply to your situation. You can find a checklist here.

Written by

Inge Mooren – van Weereld

lawyer & mediator
family law, inheritance law, mediation

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