We are often asked “Should we consider a private judge in our Carlsbad divorce?” There are several advantages to a private judge in a Carlsbad or North County divorce. There are often issues of cost and speed. There are also a few drawbacks to consider.
If your case is fairly straight forward and doesn’t involve children or substantial assets you are probably best to seek resolution of any areas of disagreement and file a form of uncontested divorce. It will still be important to have all documents reviewed by an experienced divorce and family law attorney to make sure they are in order and ready for prompt disposition once the case reaches the Judge.
In cases involving substantial assets, a business or professional practice or genuine, principled disagreement over issues such as child custody and parenting time many divorcing couples prefer to keep their private business out of the public record. Your options will include mediation and the consideration of a private judge.
The Family Court docket is already backlogged due to recent closures surrounding COVID-19. Hiring a private judge for your case often helps to resolve things more quickly.
Private judges often have more experience in divorce and family law cases than some of the judges on the Family Court. This experience helps to cut through challenging issues and identify potential alternatives. In Family Court, the Judge is a total stranger who is must impose their decision upon the parties. This is very rarely a “win or lose” proposition. Usually the judge will want each party to give a little and get a little. Many divorcing spouses walk away from the Court feeling like they’ve been punched in the stomach. Worse, the likelihood of expensive and time consuming post decree litigation is greatly increased when issues are resolved by a total stranger (the Judge) instead of by the parties themselves.
Private judges are going to add a bit to the cost of your divorce. A private judge must charge the parties for every document they must review as well as the time they spend with the parties.
The Family Court will not usually cost anywhere near the expense of a private judge. The Court will impose mediation upon the parties and apply other types of pressure to resolve areas of disagreement outside of the Court. Many parties believe the decisions of the Family Court may prove to be a better venue as the laws binding public courts are quite extensive and no Family Court Judge wants to be reversed on appeal.
So, should you consider a private judge for a Carlsbad or North County divorce? It is best to discuss all options with the proven Certified Family Law Specialists at Burke & Domercq. We will provide sound counsel on all of your options including negotiation, mediation and the advantages and disadvantages of a private judge. We can also provide recommendations on who to consider and how to select your private judge if you decide to follow that path.
“Should we consider a private judge in our Carlsbad divorce?” In some cases the answer will be “probably not.” In many cases the answer will be “yes” if the unique circumstances in your case and your goals and objectives warrant it.