Common Divorce Stalling Strategies (And What You Can Do)

Divorce is an emotionally and legally complex process that signifies the end of a marital relationship. While some couples may pursue divorce amicably, others find themselves entangled in delays and conflicts that can prolong the process.

If you’re noticing signs that your spouse might be reluctant to proceed with the divorce, it’s crucial to understand these signals, consider delay strategies that might be at play, and learn how to navigate this challenging situation. Keep reading for information on what to do if your spouse attempts to stall your divorce.

Signs that Your Spouse May Be Reluctant to Proceed with Divorce

  • Lack of Communication — One of the most significant indicators of reluctance is a sudden decline in communication. It might signal hesitance if your spouse becomes evasive, avoids discussing divorce-related matters, or cancels meetings with attorneys.
  • Stalling Legal Proceedings — If your spouse continuously requests extensions or postponements for court dates, hearings, or mediation sessions, it could be an attempt to buy more time or delay the process.
  • Unwillingness to Cooperate — A reluctance to provide necessary financial documents or engage in collaborative discussions about asset division, child custody, and alimony can indicate a desire to prolong the proceedings.
  • Hesitation to Sign Documents — If your spouse hesitates to sign legal papers or settlement agreements, it might be a sign that they are not fully committed to finalizing the divorce.
  • Nostalgia and Emotional Attachments — Frequent discussions about the past, reminiscing about happier times, or expressing sadness about the end of the relationship might suggest emotional resistance to moving forward.
  • Financial Reluctance — If your spouse is unwilling to disclose financial information or hesitates in agreeing to a fair financial settlement, it could indicate their reluctance to part ways.

Delay Strategies During a Divorce

  • Legal Maneuvering — Some spouses might intentionally complicate the divorce process by filing unnecessary motions, which can lead to delays and increased legal expenses.
  • Asset Concealment — To stall proceedings, a spouse might attempt to hide assets or income streams, making it challenging for the other party to reach a fair settlement.
  • Emotional Manipulation — Emotional appeals and attempts to guilt-trip the other spouse can lead to prolonged negotiations as the reluctant partner may hope the other will back down.
  • False Allegations — Accusations of misconduct or false claims regarding child custody, abuse, or financial impropriety can lead to investigations, prolonging the divorce process.
  • Custody Battles — A spouse reluctant to end the marriage might engage in contentious child custody battles to maintain control and connection with the other partner.
  • Property Valuation Disputes — Contesting the value of assets can lead to prolonged disputes, especially when a valuable property or business is involved.

How to Handle the Situation

  • Open Communication — Initiate an honest and calm conversation with your spouse about your concerns and the reasons behind their reluctance. Understanding their perspective can help identify the underlying issues.
  • Seek Professional Advice — Consult with your divorce attorney to discuss your concerns about potential delays and reluctance. They can guide you on the best course of action to address the situation legally.
  • Mediation — If communication has broken down, consider involving a neutral third-party mediator. Mediation can provide a structured environment for addressing concerns and finding common ground.
  • Set Realistic Expectations — Understand that divorce is a complex process, and delays can be frustrating but not uncommon. Be prepared for unforeseen challenges and maintain realistic expectations.
  • Focus on Children — If you have children, prioritize their well-being. A prolonged divorce can significantly impact them, so try to minimize conflicts and meet their emotional needs.
  • Consider Therapy — Individual or couples therapy can help you and your spouse navigate the emotional aspects of divorce and potentially facilitate a smoother process.
  • Explore Settlement Options — Collaborative divorce or alternative dispute resolution methods can often be more efficient in resolving conflicts and reducing delays.
  • Protect Your Interests — While seeking resolution, make sure your legal and financial interests are protected. Be diligent about gathering financial information and understanding your rights.

Turn to Azemika & Azemika for Expert Legal Counsel for Your Divorce

Divorce is a challenging journey that can become even more complicated when one spouse shows reluctance or employs delay strategies. Recognizing these signs, understanding potential delay tactics, and approaching the situation with patience and strategic thinking can help you navigate the process more smoothly. Regardless of how you approach the situation, remember that prioritizing your well-being and the well-being of any children involved should remain at the forefront of your decisions.

Azemika & Azemika has represented family law clients in Kern County for over three decades. Our objective is to provide knowledgeable, aggressive, affordable representation to our clients. Because our practice is devoted to only family law, we can handle cases of divorce, dissolution, child custody and visitation, and child and spousal support efficiently.

Our firm has been selected as Best of Bakersfield for divorce/family law attorney by The Bakersfield Californian for two years running. Contact us today if you’re ready to work with an award-winning team.

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