Divorce Laws

More and more, families are turning to processes other than law suits in
the courts to resolve their differences. The most common methods are mediation,
arbitration and collaborative law.

Presume that 10 years from now you are unmarried but have been living
with your partner (either same or different gender) for the past four years. You have a
child together. Unfortunately, your relationship has soured and you’re now living apart
and sharing custodial time with the infant.

Your project is to:
A. Write a two-page autobiography telling details about yourself and
your family. My name must be used (Meredith)—but everything else can be truthful or
fictionalized, whichever you prefer. The details must be realistic and thorough. Include
information about why your relationship with your partner has gone awry.

B. Write a Proposal to your partner detailing why you want to settle
your differences through either mediation, arbitration, or collaborative law. Explain in
detail how the process will work and why you choose that method over going to court or
other options for “alternative dispute resolution”. Assume you live in New York State
and include information consistent with your autobiography. There is no specific space
limitation for the Proposal, however you must provide sufficient information to
thoroughly explain the process to your partner, who is totally unaware of any methods
other than going to court.

C. Locate and read carefully and completely a prior Texas or
Maryland court case decided by a trial or appellate court in Google Scholar or another reliable database that involves the same process that you are recommending in your Proposal. In 2-3 pages, summarize that case, describe the law(s) involved, and discuss the outcome by the court. Also, explain how that case provides important information about your settlement method.

D. Attach a separate “Sources” page showing any outside resources that you relied upon in your project. There is no required format for this bibliography, however it must enable any reader (especially your professor) to readily locate your online and/or print authorities.

Sample Solution

ACED ESSAYS