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What are the divorce options for Maryland residents?

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When someone is considering a divorce, they may already have a preconceived image in their mind about what the process will be like. Many people envision contentious and lengthy court battles, over issues ranging from child custody and support to property division.

However, our Maryland readers may have seen more information in the last few years about potential options in a divorce that could make the process much easier and less expensive. A recent article focused on those options and the factors a couple should consider when deciding whether one of the alternative options will work for them.

Besides the traditional courtroom litigation route, nowadays many couples are opting for mediation or a collaborative divorce. These types of options are aimed at facilitating a more conciliatory overall process for all parties involved. Mostly these options involve working together for a mutually satisfactory end result, as well as salvaging some semblance of a relationship for the divorcing couple if they have children together.

However, where these alternative options may really be the most effective is in a divorce that involves complex property division issues. This could mean that there are significant disagreements over the marital property, or perhaps there are certain assets, like retirement accounts or business assets, that may be harder to pinpoint from a valuation standpoint.

In these cases an independent financial advisor can be brought into the process, who will then attempt to sort through all of the assets in an effort to categorize and organize the assets to reach an equitable division of the property. This process can also take some of the emotion out of the division of property, which oftentimes includes property with sentimental value for one or both of the parties.

Source: The Huffington Post, "Divorce Confidential: Should I Negotiate or Litigate My Divorce?," Caroline Choi, Sept. 25, 2013

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