Why Collaborative Divorce is a Route Worth Considering
November 27, 2017 12:00 AM EST | 4 min read
When people think of divorce, they may become overwhelmed with anxiety, fear the bickering and ill will, and dread the lawyers who will drag things out or create hostility between a couple.
Fact: Many lawyers out there make these fears and stereotypes a reality.
But there are also lawyers who pride themselves on making the divorce process as painless and peaceful as possible.
These lawyers are the ones who practice what is known as “collaborative divorce”.
What is it?
It’s when the couple works together with their attorneys to come to a resolution in a positive and results-oriented way.
Individuals can agree on all details, come to a resolution, and never step foot in a courtroom.
This is very attractive to many.
Also, check out these inspirational divorce quotes to help you move on.
What happens in a collaborative divorce?
A collaborative lawyer can only work in a collaborative divorce setting.
If the couple becomes contentious, refuses to bend or compromise, or makes it clear that they cannot work together, the lawyer must recuse (excuse oneself from a case).
Lawyers who handle traditional divorce must then take over.
This should also be a wakeup call or a defining moment for the couple.
Each person should look at their role at why the relationship didn’t work out.
This time, they should be willing to try more productively and positively to settle things.
When a couple enters a collaborative divorce setting, they start by signing a contract.
This contract is a written commitment that promises to practice good faith and fair-mindedness in their interactions and negotiations.
They also promise to be transparent with all documentation, finances and needed paperwork.
The couple and their lawyers meet in a neutral setting.
There is NO third-party mediator involved.
It is simply the couple with their collaborative attorneys – and a promise by all to be constructive and open-minded in their dealings.
Working in good faith and with a cooperative mindset is best for each couple member, their children, and all their futures.
No one wants to go through negotiations only to have them implode – making you start over with new attorneys from a more argumentative standpoint.
Why enter a collaborative divorce setting?
Collaborative divorce gives each party a chance to listen more than they argue, to explain themselves without the fear of being judged.
Each person can explain what they feel they need and why.
Collaborative attorneys can then suggest solutions to each person’s needs in a fair and equitable way.
Another benefit of this process is bringing in additional resources as needed.
This helps keep the process moving forward in a productive way, keeping all information in the open for everyone.
Some of these resources can include a therapist, an accountant, and an assessor.
With the couple working with these experts, they know that everything is above board and are getting the best information to base their decisions on.
If you’re about to split up, collaborative divorce is something you should consider – especially if children are involved.
It takes much of the anger and hostile feelings out of the process.
It also gets both members of the couple working towards the same goals.
People can be heard and understood in ways they may not have been with traditional divorce proceedings.
Many couples I have known who have gone this route have been very grateful for their decision.
It made a difficult process and situation as amenable as possible.
Collaborative divorce lets each person walk away with dignity and respect for themselves – and their ex-partner.
This article was originally posted here.