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Transitions in Divorce

Chapel Hill, North Carolina, Divorce Options Attorney

Experienced Divorce Lawyer in Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Once you've decided that your marriage or relationship must end, the next question is, "How do I go about getting a divorce or dissolving this relationship?"

Can a collaborative divorce work for me? Is mediation an option for us? Or does litigation appear to be the only way to resolve differences we have?

Please call me at the Irwin Law Firm, PLLC, at 888-606-8455 or e-mail my firm to arrange an initial consultation with me, a knowledgeable family law attorney. I will clearly explain your divorce options regarding marriage separation or marriage dissolution.

Even among couples involved in highly contested divorces, I have achieved divorce settlements that allowed all parties to move forward productively with their lives amid decreasing animosity. But, every method does not work for every case. It is important for an attorney to be skilled in many methods of dispute resolution — both litigation and alternatives such as mediation and collaborative law. Different situations require different tools.

Here are some examples of the methods available to resolve differences in a divorce:


Mediation is beneficial for couples who continue to have somewhat open communication and are willing to work together. Mediation is a more informal, cost-effective approach to divorce that takes place outside of court, with the divorcing couple and an impartial mediator of their choosing. Mediation can take place at any point in the process. Any or all issues in a divorce can be mediated. Choosing mediation does not mean you can't use an attorney. Participants in mediation should at least consult with an attorney, but the need for extensive attorney services is lessened by using a mediator. Agreeing to mediate does not prevent you from eventually using other approaches. Either spouse may opt out of this method and choose a more traditional approach at any time, such as litigation to resolve your divorce.

Marital Mediation

When couples dispute about important issues such as money, contributions to household tasks or child-rearing styles, it is important that the couple face these concerns and find a way to amicably resolve their conflict. Laura Irwin, founding attorney at the Irwin Law Firm, PLLC, helps clients constructively work through resolution of those issues to help couples stay together. If child custody arrangements from a previous relationship are an issue, attorney Irwin can help you address the issue to find a practical solution.

Collaborative Divorce

Collaborative divorce occurs when divorcing spouses and their lawyers agree to work as a team to solve all of the issues involved, including child custody and property division without going to court — no matter how difficult it seems. The attorneys work as a team − each working with one spouse directly− guiding, and supporting their client. While all decisions are made, the attorneys keep the clients oriented to the values, principles and the goals articulated by the clients at the beginning of the process. A collaborative attorney's objective is to help the clients communicate in a way that promotes understanding of the other person's point of view in order to facilitate interest-based solutions.


Sometimes going to court is the only reasonable choice. If a child is in immediate danger, if there is an immediate safety issue due to domestic violence, or if one spouse is afflicted with certain mental health issues, litigation can be the best option. It is important to choose an attorney who gives you realistic information about possible outcomes, who openly talks about and is up front about the fees involved in litigation, and who is not afraid of the courtroom.

I am an experienced litigator, mediator, and negotiator. Most importantly, I take the time to learn about you, your family, and your wishes, provide you with learned counsel about your divorce options, and I have the judgment and experience to recommend the best path for you.

No matter which process a client chooses, I knowledgeably, thoroughly and carefully represent my clients' immediate and long-term interests. When there are children involved, I help parents find solutions that take into account the needs of the children. One of the hallmarks of my practice is that I am committed to getting to know what is important to you and counseling you about divorce options that allow you to move forward with your lives with the least stress possible, including collaboration. Contact me today to learn more about the divorce options available to you.

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