Going through a divorce is a very personal matter, so it makes sense that some people prefer it to be kept private and away from the public eye. Unfortunately, divorce files become public record so anyone can access them. If you’re concerned with having your financial account details, custody arrangements, or any information that can affect your family in a negative way, there are a few routes you can take to keep your divorce private.
One option is mediation. Mediation is an alternate way to resolving disputes. A neutral third party, called a mediator, won’t tell you what to do, but will rather help you and your spouse negotiates a settlement. This process can also protect your finances from being exposed to the general public. With mediation, you can conceal you tax returns and other financial statements from being filed. Not only is mediation confidential, but it can also be less expensive than a litigated divorce. You can still hire an attorney to give you legal advice, which is recommended for those who are unsure about the divorce process and need guidance.
This route also allows you and your spouse to control the process. Rather than having to abide by a court decision, the two of you can resolve your situation based on your needs and ideas. Mediation is only successful if you and your spouse are willing to compromise and understand each other’s needs and points of view. Consult with your lawyers about hiring a mediator to see if it is a good route to take for your family.
Another option for keeping your divorce private is a co-operative divorce, which will keep everything but the most basic information confidential. During this process, the couple will keep all court filings to a minimum, which leads to all settlement terms, financial disclosure and other concerns remaining private. One way a co-operative divorce process works is when the couple agrees on everything and has an attorney draft final documents. Another way is through a mediated divorce model where the couple works with one attorney on resolving issues and preparing final documents. It can also be as complex as having both sides have attorneys, and both attorneys and parties contract to keep the matter out of court. A co-operative divorce can also be less expensive than a regular, litigated divorce.
Whether it is mediation or a co-operative divorce process, you can keep your divorce a private matter so you don’t have to worry about your information being put on public record. Consult with an attorney to pursue the approach that is the best fit for your dissolution.