So, you are past the point of reconciliation with your spouse, and you have either filed a divorce proceeding or you contemplate filing one. If you have children, then this has to be the most important consideration at the time. In each case, various scenarios can and will occur. If your spouse has violent tendencies or is abusive, then you will want to consider filing for an Order of Protection. Bear in mind that these are frequently abused. However, if the situation is a true reality, then you can obtain an Order of Protection from two sources. If you have not done anything and have not filed for divorce, you can go to your local police department and file for an Order of Protection. In out practice, it is generally easier and more effective, however, to file for one with the Court. Consult with your attorney, pay the fee and get it filed. The other side will have a chance to respond. Once the Order of Protection is in place, you can file Motions for Contempt and Motions to Show Cause to enforce it. If your spouse does not have violent tendencies and is not abusive, however the divorce is contested, then we suggest going to mediation with a family law mediator. Mediators are paid to spend long periods of time with the parties in an effort to obtain all information necessary to resolve issues such as parenting time, primary residential parents, sharing, support and many other items. Mediators can be inexpensive or expensive. They can have minimum amounts of required time or not. Talk to your attorney about hiring a mediator. Although some mediators place the parties directly together for the entire time, it has been our experience that this method does not work. Work on issues individually in a private room, then meet with the other party. This removes the initial element of hostility. If you are doing an “agreed upon” or “Irreconcilable Differences (ID)” divorce, then work things out rationally with each other. If you children are capable of engaging in frank conversation, explain things logically to them in a soft-spoken fashion. Divorce is not an easy or fun process, and, many times, the children will be the last to know and, obviously, will be upset. Be patient and use logic and compassion. SHOULD YOU HAVE QUESTIONS, CLICK ON WWW.KJONESLAWYERS.COM or call (423) 424-6208.