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Update - Post Settlement Conference

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  • Update - Post Settlement Conference

    Just thought I'd update you all on my settlement conference. Hopefully it will provide some insights to people who haven't hit this stage yet.

    The Ex and I had worked out all the issues save for the equalization amount and put it into an agreement that we had drafted. Prior to going into court, we had duty counsel look at it and they had all sorts of problems with it. Not so much the content, but the way in which it was written. As we are not lawyers, some of the language used would leave either of us vulnerable to the other presenting an alternate interpretation down the road.

    Duty counsel were amazing. They not only gave us lots of free advice on how to fix the agreement, but also came into court and talked about it with the judge and walked us over to the mediator to get us set up there. Well beyond their mandate and much appreciated.

    As mentioned, we will be going to a mediator - not so much to negotiate issues as we've already agreed on what we are doing, but to make sure the agreement and subsequent court order actually reflects what we've agreed upon. The judge almost did a spit take when he found out that the difference between our equalization amounts was only about $1000 and suggested we split the difference to save everyone the trouble, which seemed reasonable.

    The biological father of my son was there as well, trying to weasel out of paying child support. The judge was VERY stern with him and noted that as the bio dad, he has an obligation to pay the full table amount plus some retroactive. The fact that he hasn't been involved at all thus far does not absolve him of that responsibility, and that quite frankly he should be thankful that my involvement and my Ex's non-pursuit of the matter has granted him many years of getting off scott free. Still, he will fight it out with the ex and almost certainly lose - but thankfully I dont need to be involved in that.

    All-in-all I was disappointed that we didn't get it fully resolved, but thankful that we didn't proceed with the agreement as written. Waiting until the end of May sucks, but at least we will be armed with a more viable agreement. I just need to keep her in agreement until then.
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