When people in Michigan are going through a divorce, they may prefer to negotiate an agreement for property division and child custody with their spouse. However, this requires the spouse’s cooperation. In some cases, negotiations might simply be dragging while in other cases the spouse might refuse to negotiate at all. At this point, the person may need to determine whether the best course of action is to persist, to give up and go to litigation, or to settle.
Time is a factor. Litigation nearly always takes longer than negotiating because of the time needed to prepare for the hearing as well as the demands of the court calendar. However, if it appears that the other person is not going to budge in further negotiations, it may be best to avoid wasting any further time trying to negotiate.
Cost is another consideration. Litigation can be expensive, sometimes going into five or even six figures. If the argument is over property division and the property argued over is worth less than what litigation will cost, it may be in a person’s best interests to settle. Finally, stress may play a significant role in the decision. Litigation can be all-consuming. However, if a person has a strong case and cannot get their way through negotiation, litigation may still be the right choice.
A person may want to pursue litigation if a spouse is trying to hide assets. Another case might be one in which a parent feels that their child is unsafe with the other parent. An attorney may be able to help strategize. For example, if the other parent is abusive or neglectful, medical or police reports may help support this claim. Judges will make an effort to reach a decision that is in the best interests of the child as well as one that divides property equitably.