If you are faced with a divorce or other family law issue, you have options surrounding how you would like to proceed to resolve your conflict. In Texas, many dispute resolution processes exist and selecting the right one for you takes careful thought. Visualize a shelf with variety of containers available for your choosing. Which container makes the most sense for you and your family and the conflict in which you are involved? In other words, how much structure do you need and what structure will benefit you and your family the most?
When a couple with a dispute can sit down and talk about their problem in a productive way, they may be able to resolve their dispute using the "kitchen table" process.
Because strong emotions often accompany a family law issue, some couples want a third-party to help them communicate and resolve their problem.
Strong emotions, challenging communication, and/or more complexity might cause both participants to want legal advice and advocates, without the threat of going to court.
In Texas, mediation is "caucus-style" with participants in separate rooms and all communication relayed by the mediator. Most counties require mediation prior to trial.
If a couple cannot agree and for some reason a traditional trial is not an option, they may choose to hire an arbitrator to hear evidence and make decisions.
Sometimes called the "litigation process" this process is for couples who want to proceed according to statutory procedure and preserve the option of a judge hearing evidence and making decisions.