Family relationships provide a sense of belonging that feeds the primary emotional need to be connected to others who you share a common bond with. A family plays a significant role in the lives of its members, including shaping identities and contributing to their physical, emotional, and mental health. Ideally, the family represents a safe space that brings out the best in its members. Unfortunately, this is only sometimes the case.
Family conflict is inevitable. However, prolonged and unresolved family conflict has the potential to transform the one place meant to offer a haven for its members into one that torments them physically and emotionally. Addressing family disputes at the earliest opportunity is always the best way to prevent them from mutating into undesirable consequences such as broken families.
Attempting to resolve a family dispute on your own and as soon as it happens is the ideal way, but there are instances when involving a third party is recommended. Sometimes, the nature of some family disputes demands the involvement of a family lawyer to either mediate or litigate. This is a great page for more insights into the various scenarios where you may require the services of legal experts.
Common Reasons For Family Disputes
Although there are many causes of family disputes, the main ones include the following:
Whoever first said ‘money is the root of all evil’ probably did so after witnessing numerous family conflicts caused by money issues. Financial stress is at the core of most family disputes, specifically the lack of sufficient money to pay bills and other necessities. Therefore, poor financial ability due to poor salaries, wages, unemployment, or declining business profits is the leading cause of family conflict.
Disagreements on material possessions are also a major cause of family disputes. Some common issues leading to property disputes among family members include feelings of unfairness regarding the division of inherited property. Also, when family members pool resources probably driven by the need to acquire costly property in a good neighborhood, joint-ownership problems typically arise later.
Discipline is a critical character trait, and its absence leads to conflict in families. Indiscipline by children and even adults is demonstrated by little things like untidy personal spaces, not attending to shared chores, or even poor commitment to school and work.
- Marital Problems
Most, if not all, marriages go through various types of challenges. Some causes of marital distress, such as domestic violence, infidelity, and poor communication, often tear into the marital bond, ultimately leading to family disputes.
Resolving Different Types Of Family Disputes
When the cause of conflict between family members isn’t sufficiently addressed, it can spiral out of control and morph into other challenges. Next is a brief discussion about various types of family disputes and how a family lawyer can assist in resolving them.
- Divorce and Separation
Some causes of family disputes, including those mentioned earlier, can get to the point where a married couple considers going their separate ways. Unfortunately, a divorce or separation is often a complex affair when there are children and joint property between married partners. At the same time, the end of a marriage can be emotionally overwhelming to those involved.
A family lawyer can be instrumental in drafting the initial separation agreement. They help identify the various assets accumulated during the life of the marriage to determine a fair divorce settlement. A family lawyer can also assist with various issues, including spousal support and protection orders. In other instances, a family lawyer’s mediation results in happy endings where partners reconcile and decide to work on their marriage.
Another critical area during divorce and separation concerns the welfare of children born into the marriage. While looking into the children’s best interests, a family lawyer helps a couple navigate child custody and maintenance.
- Property disputes
The distribution of inherited property is a leading cause of property disputes among siblings. It’s worse when the property owner dies intestate because getting family members to agree on the division often proves challenging. And even when a will exists, it’s common for some family members to oppose it, citing unfairness.
Joint-ownership problems are also typical in property disputes. Most joint-ownership disputes arise after the death of one of the parties and are initiated by beneficiaries or dependents. Disputes can also arise among existing owners when there are misunderstandings about the terms of the agreement.
A family lawyer can be instrumental in resolving property disputes without getting to the courtroom. A family lawyer employs alternative dispute resolution techniques such as mediation and arbitration to enable aggrieved parties to arrive at a binding decision without resorting to costly litigation in the courtroom.
Conflict between family members is bound to happen. Unfortunately, some conflicts require the intervention of a third party. If you or your loved ones are experiencing prolonged family disputes, the services of a family lawyer may be all the assistance you need. An experienced legal negotiator who understands the dynamics of family disputes will work to resolve the problem while ensuring you get a favorable outcome.