What is a Contested Divorce?

By Allison Fredrickson | Family & Divorce Law

A contested divorce is where you and your spouse disagree on the major issues involved in your case. If you and your spouse are not in a good place to communicate with each other, the initial paperwork also known as a “Petition” and “Answer” will tell your attorney the extent of your disagreements and the best way to work through them. Some of the steps for a contested divorce include:

1. Mutual Exchange of documents also known as ‘discovery’.

Each spouse will request information and documents from the other so both parties have a clear understanding of values and other important details surrounding the issues at hand.

2. Mediation conducted by a neutral family law attorney.

Each spouse along with their attorney (and sometimes without) will meet with the qualified neutral and talk through the major disagreements to see if there is any room for compromise. The mediator may also explain their opinion as to the likely outcome at trial

3. Early Neutral Evaluation process similar to mediation and encouraged by the Court.

The parties select a neutral ‘expert’ who helps identify the strengths and weaknesses of each party’s position and then explains the likely outcome at trial. If the issue deals with parenting time and custody, the parties will select a male and female expert to make sure all viewpoints are considered.

4. Settlement Conference with both parties and/or their attorneys.

Most often occurs after all or at least one of the three options above. Everyone meets in the same room to talk about remaining disagreements and if anything more can be done before proceeding to Trial.

View Contested Divorce Process


We Can Help!

CONTACT US TODAY IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS ABOUT THIS TOPIC OR IF WE CAN ASSIST YOU WITH YOUR FAMILY LAW NEEDS.

Fill out the form below, or call our Stillwater, MN office at 651-429-2878.



This site uses cookies and other tracking technologies to assist with navigation and your ability to provide feedback, analyze your use of our website, and assist with our promotional and marketing efforts. Read our Privacy Policy for more information.