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Is it possible to postpone our divorce instead of withdrawing it?

When divorce proceedings begin, one or both spouses may be eager to rush through the process and get to the end. As the real date of divorce looms, however, it’s likely that one or both parties might want to postpone the divorce in order to have more time to think about its repercussions. When first sought, the divorce might seem like a good way to provoke change in a marriage. As both parties work through issues, they may discover that there are more reasons to consider staying than to continue through with finalizing a divorce.

There are many positive reasons to stay married. Children are often one of the best reasons to at least consider something like marriage counseling or working through tough issues in the marriage. Although any measures to save a marriage may ultimately fail in the end, it’s a positive step for both parties to know that they’ve done everything possible to save the marriage. If one or both parties change their mind as the final date for divorce approaches, they may want to delay the finalization.

Is it possible to postpone our divorce instead of withdrawing it?

It takes a lot of work and negotiation to get through divorce proceedings. Months of legal services may be already paid for, critical agreements may have been reached about custody, alimony, and property, and both parties may not want to lose that entire process by withdrawing a divorce. This means that if the marriage still ultimately ends in divorce, you’ve got to go through all of the legal steps you did before and start from scratch. Postponing a divorce, however, is possible.

Postponement gives both parties time to seek marriage counseling, receive mediation, and take other measures to save the marriage, without having to completely withdraw all of the progress made during prior divorce proceedings. In order to take this step, though, a judge has to agree on postponement. This is not an uncommon decision on the part of a judge, though, so take hope.

Postponing a divorce

Your lawyer will expertly guide you through all of the measures you must take to postpone, but not withdraw, your divorce. To do this, your lawyer will file a motion for continuance to the courts asking that the judge postpone the finalization of your divorce. While the judge considers the motion, you and your spouse have the opportunity to discuss the things that led to the divorce proceedings in the first place.

Many times, couples are able to use this valuable postponement time to receive counseling and mediation and to seriously contemplate the finality of a final divorce order. It’s worth noting that every couple who is currently divorcing once went to the same amount of effort to marry each other. This initial, early love can resurface even as the final date of divorce looms. Once the reality of divorce becomes clearer and it’s obvious that the marriage is about to end, it’s natural for couples to seriously contemplate whether they want this to happen.

Lawyers are able to file a motion of continuance with the courts and successfully negotiate other arrangements that might need to take place during the postponement (for example, marriage counseling). It’s necessary to show the court exactly why it’s worth it to postpone the divorce. It’s also worth noting that one party may disagree with postponing a divorce, thereby complicating the legal battle and necessitating the help of a good attorney even further. While one spouse’s feelings will not keep a judge from ordering a postponement, it’s worth noting that this simply buys more time for the person who doesn’t want the divorce to go through. Delaying it indefinitely likely won’t happen in cases.

Making the most of a postponement

It’s during the postponement that you have a final chance to make a case for marriage instead of divorce. Mediation can be an important part in this and both parties will have the opportunity to negotiate with each other or request certain things that might help avoid divorce (such as counseling). Ultimately, a judge will decide whether or not a divorce should be postponed. Having a good lawyer during this time is vital and it’s recommended that you seek the advice of a lawyer also before you ask for a postponement. Ideally, all divorces should be handled by knowledgeable lawyers who know the process well. Some of these motions can be filed by yourself though.