Uncontested Divorce in Singapore
In Singapore, there are two routes a divorce can take: the contested route and the uncontested route.
In the contested route, proceedings are dealt with in two steps: Firstly, the court will deal with the divorce – the dissolving of the marriage itself; secondly, the court will then deal with the ancillary issues, such as maintenance, the division of assets, and the custody, care and control of the children.
In an uncontested divorce, parties must have settled everything prior to the filing of the Writ for Divorce. That is, they must have decided on the reasons for the divorce and must also have settled on all the ancillary matters beforehand. Proceedings will be compressed into one stage and parties need only really be concerned with the signing of the divorce papers.
An uncontested divorce may not be possible or realistic in every scenario. However, where possible, it is the preferred route for the following reasons:
Saves time, saves costs
The most obvious benefit of an uncontested divorce is that it saves time and saves costs. Should the documents be in order, it is be possible to conclude divorce proceedings within four months.
In contrast, should a divorce go down a contested route, there will likely be two sets of lawyers’ fees that need to be paid and two sets of legal documents to be prepared and filed. There will also be more court dates for your lawyer to attend, such as case conferences, status conferences, mediations and possibly hearings. Proceedings can stretch out to about a year at the least, even if parties are reasonably amicable. This ultimately means more money to be spent.
Held in chambers
In an uncontested divorce, proceedings are all held “in chambers” – no one will be present except for a judge. Should a divorce be uncontested (that is, if parties are unable to decide on the reason for a divorce), it will be held in open court which members of the public are free to attend.
The stress-free route
If both parties know the marriage has ended and are able to reach an agreement between themselves regarding the ancillary matters, why not choose a more amicable and stress-free route? This allows you to move forward with your life more quickly. Even if you have employed lawyers to represent you, litigating a matter still require you to expend time and emotional energy as you deal with the uncertainty and acrimony.
ABOUT PKWA LAW
At PKWA Law, our team of Family Lawyers are consistently named as leading Singapore divorce lawyers by respected independent legal publications such as Asian Legal Business, Singapore Business Review, Global Law Experts and Doyle's Guide to Singapore Family Lawyers.
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