Most people do not deal with matters of family law, such as divorce or child custody issues, on a daily basis, which can mean that, when it comes to facing these cases, they may not be familiar with some of the commonly used terms, which can make the process that much more frustrating and stressful. To provide some clarity and better inform potential divorcing parties, the following are some of the most commonly used terms associated with divorce proceedings, along with their definitions. By taking the time to review and understand these terms, divorcing parties can obtain a better insight as to what the process entails, which can help ease some of their stress as they move forward with their case.
- Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) – Processes, such as mediation or arbitration, that attempt to resolve the issues disputed in a divorce case before the matter is brought to court before a judge. ADR is typically sought out both to alleviate the court’s caseload and to try to resolve divorce issues via a less expensive alternative.
- Arrears – Past due money owed for a court-ordered payment, such as spousal support or maintenance or child support payments.
- Default – The failure of one party to show up in court or provide an answer to a petition. When one party defaults in a divorce proceeding, he or she implicitly gives the court permission to grant the other party everything the other party has requested.
- Discovery – The initial phase of a court proceeding that occurs before a case goes to trial or goes before the judge. During the discovery process, each of the parties involved in the case exchanges various documents to be used in the case and conducts depositions of the parties involved in the case (these depositions can later be used as evidence for either side).
When it comes to going through a divorce or dealing with any matter of family law, such as child custody or parental rights, do not try to settle the case without the help of a skilled family lawyer. Working with the Colorado family law attorneys at the Law Office of Mike Hulen can be essential to ensuring that your rights are fully protected and that your family law matters are resolved as favorably as possible. For years, we have been successful at helping our Clients negotiate favorable divorce settlements, child custody agreements, alimony payments, etc. Contact us at (303) 932-8666 to learn more about your rights and receive professional advice regarding the best manner in which to proceed with your case.