How Many Family Law Cases Go to Trial? 

How many family law cases go to trial? Many people wonder about this question. Many cases are settled without ever going to trial. Here’s a quick look at the process. Read on to learn more about Pretrial, Trial, Mandatory sentencing, and competency hearings. You’ll be surprised at the range of outcomes. We’ll even discuss how to avoid having a case go to trial! Listed below are some statistics that will help you prepare.

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Pretrial 

When it comes to family law, the trial process is one of the most expensive and time-consuming parts of the legal process. Although few cases go to trial, around five percent of all family law cases end up in court. The typical case involves two parties – spouses in a divorce or custody case, and parents and grandparents in a grandparent’s rights dispute. During the trial, the parties typically contest issues relating to child custody and parenting time, child support, property, debt division, and so on. 

Trial 

How many family law cases go to trial? A courtroom trial is the most time-consuming and expensive part of the legal process. It is estimated that only five to ten percent of family law cases proceed to trial. These cases generally involve two parties – spouses or parents, or grandparents in a grandparent’s rights case. The most commonly disputed issues are child custody, parenting time, child support, and property or debt division. 

Mandatory sentencing 

If your family law case goes to trial, you may face the possibility of mandatory sentencing. Indigency is a defense that can prevent you from complying with court orders. A judge may order an amenability hearing in certain circumstances, such as when one spouse is not making child support payments. Other times, the judge may order contempt proceedings against the other spouse’s employer. These procedures are typically outlined in the Family Code. 

Competency hearings 

When a defendant is accused of a crime, he or she may face a competency hearing. A court must determine whether the defendant can make rational decisions and understand the proceedings. In a 1960 case, Dusky v. the United States, the court found that a defendant was competent for trial if he or she was not mentally incapacitated at the time of the crime. 

Alternative Dispute Resolution 

The vast majority of lawsuits are settled outside of the courtroom, and this is true of family law cases as well. Hiring a skilled alternative dispute resolution team can make mediation a viable option and save your client money. Additionally, alternative dispute resolution methods can reduce the stress and expense associated with a litigation case. And these methods are more effective when used amid a divorce or child custody dispute.