Florida courts are close to the public, but Family Courts have remained open during the pandemic to hear and decide emergency petitions related to children. Judges are conducting hearing and trial either telephonically or by video conference. You should expect family court proceedings to continue electronically until all public spaces reopen for full use by the state’s citizenry.
Naturally, all other non-emergency cases have been stalled, or proceeding slowly as many court functions as well as court personnel act in a limited capacity. As the state’s family courts open and new matters start getting processed, understand that your own divorce or family court proceeding will be delayed. Do not fret, though. There are ways to adjudicate or decide a divorce or family law legal dispute out of court and for such a decision to be binding on the parties.
Consider Alternative Dispute Resolution Procedures in Lieu of Litigation
Legally known as alternative dispute resolution (ADR), ADR methods permit the adjudication or resolution of legal disputes out of court. The most common in-court proceeding is a hearing or trial, also known as litigation. ADR methods substitutes litigation with a tool to resolve the dispute with mediation, or negotiation, other or alternative solutions to legal disputes.
Lovers of sports are fully versed in the lingo surrounding the arbitration of sports disputes between players and managers. Instead of a million-dollar baseball contract, an arbitration can be used to solve a child custody dispute. A mediation can be more beneficial in a child support matter.
Mediation is less formal than the arbitration process and places a mediator in charge of the proceedings. Like in an arbitration, a mediator is a neutral third-party who is also selected on consent by all the parties in the dispute. The decision issued by the mediator, however, is non-binding, and can be disregarded in court proceedings if one party does not live up to the terms of the agreement or circumstances or conditions change.
2. Collaborative divorce
The focus of collaborative divorces is to settle the case without going to court. The parties that participate in a collaborative divorce wish to protect their rights, go through the divorce process by attending and participating in amicable settlement negotiations. The process is designed to be as non-adversarial as possible. It allows the couple to feel as if they are working together toward a common goal. We will explain this interesting approach in more depth in another post
Contact a Weston, FL Divorce Lawyer Today for an Immediate Telephone Consultation Regarding a Florida Divorce
Family law disputes can still be resolved in the family court. However, you will have to wait for a decision and have no role in selecting the judge. If you are contemplating filing for a divorce and think mediation or a collaborative divorce may be a useful tool to resolve your divorce or family law legal dispute, contact the Law Office of Dana Pechersky.