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How can I keep my divorce matters private?

On Behalf of | Nov 30, 2023 | Family Law

Divorce should be a private matter between two former spouses. However, at the end of the day, it is still a family court matter, meaning it will go on public record. A Texas divorce record is a set of documents that legitimizes the end of the marriage. The documents can include all the information pertaining to the divorce case, including the final divorce decree.

A Texas divorce record could contain confidential information from the divorce proceedings, even intricate details of your spousal maintenance, asset division and custody arrangements. It will make your personal and financial divorce details available to anyone who wishes to see it. If your divorce is contentious or controversial, you may be worried about sensitive matters becoming gossip. Fortunately, mediation can give you the privacy you need.

Mediation keeps divorce matters outside of the courtroom

Mediation is an alternative dispute resolution method to litigation. Mediation occurs outside of court. Therefore, it is private. It involves the guidance of a neutral third party, the mediator. The mediator facilitates open communication between the parties involved. You and your former spouse must reach mutually acceptable agreements to address conflicts and disputes. It is all about finding common ground.

A problem may arise if your spouse refuses to cooperate, in which case you can remind them of the alternative: court. Litigation can take years to finalize, and the intimate details you share in the courtroom will be open to the public. Mediation also gives you and your spouse more control over the settlement agreement, unlike in court, where a judge decides for you.

When mediation is not an option

If you believe mediation is not an option, you may be able to keep your divorce proceedings confidential by requesting for an “Agreed Order to Seal.” The family court judge will decide whether the reason for your request is compelling and substantial enough to justify sealing the records from the public eye. Otherwise, they may not sign the order.

You may want to learn what other options you have so you can understand how you can maintain your privacy throughout the divorce. Mediation may still be the best legal way to keep your divorce matters private.