Austin Divorce Arbitration Attorneys
In pending divorce cases, an alternative option to divorce litigation is divorce arbitration – a process that is more informal than a courtroom divorce, but not lacking any of the legitimacy of a traditional divorce trial. In divorce arbitration, the splitting parties agree on an impartial third party to act as judge and jury in the case. The arbitrator—often a lawyer accredited with specialized training in divorce arbitration or a retired judge—makes all the same decisions a judge in a court trial would, but the process is speedier and less formal than traditional court proceedings. In arbitration, an arbitrator will hear both sides’ arguments, gather and analyze relevant evidence, and make the final, binding decisions. Arbitration is a great alternative route in divorce cases if you wish to escape the drawn out proceedings and elongated emotional distress characteristic of traditional divorce trials.
Divorce can be a harrowing experience for many, as former spouses struggle to transition into a new life without their partner. This makes arbitration an appealing option for those more inclined to an accelerated form of dispute resolution, outside of the courtroom. At Kirker Davis LLP, our legal team is experienced with divorce law and can provide arbitration services for those who favor a speedy, informal divorce proceeding.
Advantages of Arbitration
There are many benefits of divorce arbitration that are generally not seen in court trials. They include:
- Privacy: While your court records remain public, arbitration occurs in a private conference room—or other convenient location—with no spectators. This offers a greater level of security than a court trial, which is open to the public.
- Efficiency: In divorce arbitration, proceedings can begin once all involved parties can agree on a meeting date. This is a major advantage over court trials, which sometimes take months to get a working date.
- Informality: Along with being able to carefully vet and choose your arbitrator, both spouses may set the rules of the proceeding, including what issues the arbitrator will be deciding on. Arbitration can address custody, alimony, child support, and division of marital assets, among other issues that might arise out of a traditional courtroom divorce.
- Cost-Effective: Because the process of arbitration is shorter than the length of divorce litigation, it is often less expensive than a trial.
- Finality: the decisions that an arbitrator makes are binding, which means an unhappy party cannot appeal an unfavorable ruling.
The finality of arbitration may also act as a disadvantage in some cases. If the decisions an arbitrator makes do not favor you, there are no means of contesting the ruling. This differs from a court trial, which includes the option of an appeals process. However, the advantage of carefully selecting a fair and trusted arbitrator may offset this potential drawback.
Contact a Divorce Arbitration Lawyer in Austin
Arbitration is becoming a more popular option in divorce proceedings for couples who wish to settle their marital dissolution outside of court. At Kirker Davis LLP, our divorce arbitration attorneys have plentiful experience handling a wide range of divorce cases around Central Texas. We can answer any questions or concerns you may have about divorce arbitration, and can offer guidance in whether arbitration or a traditional courtroom divorce would most favor you. If you are interested in arbitration as an alternative to a court trial in your divorce, call our Austin offices at (512) 598-0010 for a free consultation.