Can I Seek Arbitration and Mediation in Family Disputes? A Chandigarh Wife’s Guide to Pursuing Legal Remedies in District Court

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1. I have been married for ten years and we have two children. Recently, my husband has started to become increasingly abusive, both verbally and physically. Can I seek arbitration or mediation in this scenario, or is it advisable to directly opt for a divorce?

2. We have a joint property in Chandigarh, which was purchased after our marriage. If I decide to seek a divorce, how will the property be divided? Does the court favour any particular party in such cases or is it always an equal division?

3. Given the current situation, I am worried about the safety and well-being of my children. How can I ensure that they are protected during this process? Can I apply for their custody right away or does it have to wait till the divorce proceedings are over?

4. My husband has threatened to cut off all financial support if I proceed with the divorce. What legal rights do I have in this regard? Can I seek maintenance during the court proceedings?

5. If I opt for arbitration or mediation, how long does it usually take for the process to complete? Is it a quicker resolution compared to traditional court proceedings?

6. Lastly, can you please guide me on how to initiate either arbitration or mediation? What are the required documents and steps involved in this process?

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  1. 1. Arbitration or mediation can indeed be sought in cases of family disputes. These methods are often preferred as they are less adversarial and more focused on mutually beneficial resolutions. However, considering the severity of the abuse you’ve mentioned, it may be more beneficial to directly opt for divorce proceedings. The abusive nature of your relationship could potentially make mediation or arbitration less effective.

    2. In case of divorce, division of property doesn’t necessarily have to be equal. The court considers several factors such as the financial status of both parties, contributions made towards the purchase of the property, and the welfare of the children, among others. As a result, the division could be equal or otherwise, depending on these considerations.

    3. The safety and well-being of your children is paramount. You can apply for interim custody of your children during the divorce proceedings. The court will make a decision based on the best interests of the child, taking into consideration factors such as the child’s age, emotional and physical well-being, and the parent’s ability to provide for the child.

    4. As a wife, you have a right to maintenance from your husband during the pendency of the divorce case. This is irrespective of his threats to cut off financial support. The court will consider factors such as your husband’s income, your own earning capacity, and the standard of living enjoyed by you during your marriage.

    5. The duration of arbitration or mediation processes can vary significantly depending on the complexity of the issues involved and the willingness of both parties to reach a resolution. While these methods can potentially offer quicker resolutions compared to traditional court proceedings, it is not always guaranteed.

    6. To initiate arbitration or mediation, you need to approach an arbitrator or mediator who is experienced in family law disputes. The process usually involves submitting a request for arbitration or mediation along with relevant documents such as marriage certificate, details of properties owned, evidence of abuse if any, and information about children. It’s advisable to consult with a lawyer to guide you through the process.

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