How To Have An Amicable Divorce

March 18, 2019
Kim Brown

Article written by Kim Brown

The “good divorce” does exist. In fact, we’re seeing a rise in amicable divorces.

Married couples don’t want the drama often associated with divorce. They don’t want to spend years in court. And if kids are involved, they don’t want to disrupt the children’s lives, either.

Every divorce is different, and some divorces will be more complicated than others depending on the couple, their willingness to work together, and the circumstances surround their case. However, the suggestions below can help soon-to-be-exes find resolutions more quickly, and with less drama.

Maintain good communication

We cannot stress enough how important good communication is when going through a divorce. It’s impossible for partners to work together and move forward if they’re not on the same page. Blaming or attacking an ex will only make problems worse.

Some couples will be able to speak with each other over the phone or through text messages without much conflict. That’s great! But others may find this too painful or difficult. If that’s the case, they can use email, apps, or have their lawyers or a mediator help them keep conversations relevant and productive.

Exes do not have to remain close, but they will need to make several important decisions about their divorce and their future. The better they can communicate, the easier the divorce process will be.

Consider alternatives to court

Court tends to be a very slow process. In some cases, it can literally take years. It is generally more expensive, and problems often intensify between exes when they litigate.

Court also has a tendency to create a win-lose dynamic between couples. When it comes to child custody and access, families feel more stress. This is not ideal if you’re trying to end your relationship without drama.

Conversely, alternative dispute resolution gives couples more control and often facilitates better results for everyone. Mediation, for example, is successful is some 80% of disputes. It is usually cheaper and faster than litigation, and even if mediation isn’t successful in resolving all matters, many problems are still resolved, and fewer issues must be contested at court.

Keep your divorce off of social media

Divorce is emotional, and even if you’re on good terms with your ex, you may be tempted to vent your emotions on Facebook or Instagram from time to time.

We would strongly advise against this for a couple of reasons.

First of all, if your post seen by your ex, chances are they’re going to get upset (and remember, even if you unfriend or block your spouse, you likely have mutual friends who will pick up on your post and may share your rant with your ex). As a result, their willingness to negotiate a fair and amicable agreement may vanish.

Secondly, anything shared through social media could be admissible in court. That can jeopardize your case if you’ve posted an untruth, shared news about a new relationship, or demonstrated that your financial status is not what you’ve officially reported. If in doubt, keep your thoughts to yourself.

Don’t be tempted to take risky shortcuts

DIY divorces are appealing primarily because they are inexpensive. And while they can be done, we would not recommend this approach, especially if there are complex assets or children involved in the divorce. Family law can be complicated, and couples can (and often do) overlook important details.

If for example, a separation agreement is lacking essential information about vacation schedules with the kids, unexpected issues may arise later on, and exes who were at peace may begin to fight. To resolve these new issues, more time and money will likely be required from both partners, and they may end up having to hire family lawyers anyway.

Seek emotional support

Tears and anger are part of almost every divorce, even the good ones. If you find that your emotions are becoming overwhelming, please seek help through counselling. While your family lawyer will listen to you, they are not therapists and cannot help you work through those emotions. Their job is to ensure your legal rights are protected.