Can You Make Your Spouse Settle With You In A West Virginia Divorce?

A question that comes up sometimes in a West Virginia divorce is if one can make their soon to be former spouse negotiate with them to get a settlement? This comes up often when the other spouse is not cooperating or not trying to come to any kind of agreement whatsoever. It could be about resolving property matters involving child custody, child support, alimony or more. People who try to make the spouse settle find out that they can’t make their soon to be former spouse come to some sort of agreement.

Since one can’t make their spouse settle, they have two options. Number one, come to an agreement or number two, present the case to the judge and let the judge decide. If one does not want this to be decided by the judge, then sometimes they can see if the soon to be former spouse wants to go to some sort of mediation. Now, mediation is a thing that’s done in which both parties will show up in front of a neutral person and know that the neutral person is not there to make any decisions. The neutral person is there to try to facilitate an agreement between the parties they may or may not agree to that. Sometimes what the courts will do is they will actually have them do what is known as a mediation screening process.

At the end of that process, if it looks like they might be able to reach some sort of agreement, then as a result of the screening process, the court will send the couple to a mediator to try to resolve the case. Sometimes it’s helpful. Sometimes it’s just a waste of time. If one feels like to skip the mediation process, then the other thing that one can sometimes do is attempt to reason with the other person. One may want to explain it’s probably going to be in their best interest to try to reach some sort of agreement because otherwise the judge will end up deciding for them.

The majority of the time spouses are able to come to some sort of agreement. If they can’t, they just present the case to the judge and the judge decides. The judge will generally do things according to what the law is. The good news is that if one gets what they consider to be not a good outcome, they can always appeal. The appellate court will look at whether the judge made some sort of mistake. However, the best thing one can do may be to try to convince the soon to be former spouse to come to an agreement. If they cannot reach some sort of agreement, then the judge is there to help that divorcing couple resolve it.Pritt CTA (1).png