What is a Mandatory Settlement Conference in a Carlsbad divorce? Is this necessary in every case?
A mandatory settlement conference is a meeting between the former spouses and their attorneys prior to the beginning of trial proceedings in your divorce. The conference is designed to reduce the burdens on a family law court that is already overburdened by helping to resolve some or all areas of dispute prior to appearing before a Judge.
Prior to the mandatory settlement conference the attorneys for each party prepare a brief for the court outlining the position of their clients and areas of dispute. At the conference your attorneys will confer and work to develop negotiated solutions for each area of disagreement between the parties.
The Judge may step in at this point and order the parties to participate in a “chamber conference” prior to the trial. All of these efforts are designed to help the parties to reach agreement before submitting the arguments to the Court.
It is important to note that the primary source of cost in a North County or Carlsbad divorce is the resolution of disagreement. Trial before a judge is almost always the most expensive form of resolution. It also provides the least amount of input or control for the parties themselves.
Most litigants are disappointed by the orders issued by a family law judge. These cases are not usually a “win” or a “loss.” The Judge will attempt to find a fair solution where both parties have to “give a little.”
The fastest, least expensive and best long-term solution is for the parties to negotiate to find common ground, or work through mediation in order to resolve any and all areas of disagreement regarding every item contained within the separation agreement. The parties are much more likely to abide by their own agreements, and several studies have shown this reduces the likelihood of litigation after the divorce is completed.
The mandatory settlement conference is the last effort to resolve differences between the parties prior to entering into litigation in a divorce trial.