The following are Kulerski and Cornelison’s blog posts from their Chicago Tribune – Chicago Now – “The Way We War” blog.
Do you know of anyone that has gone to trial in their divorce and has nice things to say about their experience? Most people who fight it out in court wish they hadn’t.
Many depict the divorce legal system as a process that:
- is impersonal
- does not listen to what is really important
- allows for too many delays
- does not try to understand and validate their needs
- is disinterested in their spouse’s misconduct
- shows no sympathy for the injustices their partner inflicted on them
- allows their spouse to tell lie after lie without being punished
- does not punish their soon-to-be ex for ruining the marriage
- does not give the innocent spouse appropriate credit for their good works
- is a bottomless money pit where the lawyers get richer and the clients get poorer.
The public is fed up and wants a change. It is not uncommon these days for people to spend more money on their divorces than they did for their weddings. The frustration is building to a point where one of two things must occur: either people stop getting divorced, or they find a way to get divorced civilly and without using litigation. The first is not going to happen; so the answer, if any, should lie in the second choice.It may take a generation or two, but the way we war in divorce must change for the better. Society is demanding a more efficient way to divorce. The number of divorces filed each year shows no indication of decreasing significantly, and it is not realistic to expect attorneys to start charging less.
Our choices are limited to one: we must figure out how to keep our divorces from becoming nasty.
Typically, over 90% of divorces reach a settlement before a trial begins. The problem is that most do not settle until after the parties have spent excessive amounts of money, time, and energy. So the goal should be to settle the divorce quickly and out of court.
An early and sensible settlement becomes possible when you and your spouse agree to accept a compromise settlement. While you may be willing to do so, the trick is in persuading your soon-to-be ex to meet you half way. The Way We War can shed some light on accomplishing this. Please stay tuned.