Updated December 3, 2023
What should you know about collaborative divorce? Well, divorce is inevitably an emotionally challenging experience, but the collaborative approach removes that stereotypical adversarial aspect. Instead, collaboration fosters a cooperative environment where you and your spouse can resolve problems, agree on key issues, and preserve the integrity of your relationship. The latter aspect of collaborative divorce is vital when you have children and want to maintain a positive association with your ex for their sake.
Resolving Problems the Collaborative Way
In the collaborative process, with assistance from your respective attorneys, you and your spouse will resolve problems in a way that addresses your shared objectives. In the beginning, you both agree to the following:
- Be respectful and act in good faith as you negotiate
- Voluntarily disclose all financial and other important information
- Avoid using – or threatening to use – litigation to resolve an issue
The prevailing focus is on win-win solutions that meet the needs of both spouses and children alike. Depending on what issues need to be settled, other members of the collaborative team may include:
- Mental health professionals
- Child advocates
- Financial planners
Collaborative Divorce Benefits
When a couple is willing to work together, collaborative divorce presents multiple advantages over the courtroom process.
- Better for the children: High-conflict divorce is stressful for children. Collaborative divorce minimizes their exposure to negativity and allows parents to create a positive post-divorce parenting partnership.
- Encourages communication: A framework exists to communicate your concerns non-adversarially and agree on an outcome.
- More control: You and your spouse control the outcome, whereas litigated divorces usually end with a judge making the final decisions.
- Less expensive: High-conflict, fully litigated divorces are costly, with attorney fees, depositions, discovery costs, and more. In comparison, the collaborative process is much more affordable.
- Takes less time: Working together enables you and your spouse to reach an agreement sooner than waiting for hearing dates and a judge’s order, etc.
- Private proceedings: Court cases become a matter of public record, while the collaborative process is private. You can feel comfortable knowing that all discussions will remain confidential.
An essential part of the collaborative process is that both parties and their attorneys agree to resolve issues via negotiation. If this turns out to be impossible, the divorce will have to be litigated. Collaborative divorce may also not work if there is a history of domestic violence or a significant disparity in bargaining power. But, for everyone else, it presents an opportunity to settle financial matters, asset division, child custody, and other essential areas without ever setting foot in a courtroom.
We hope it has been helpful to learn what you should know about collaborative divorce. For more information, contact Freed Marcroft today. We are experienced in the collaborative approach to divorce and can answer your questions, guide you through the process, and help you reach a settlement that is the best for your family.
Freed Marcroft’s attorneys guide select clients through the legal aspects of divorce and family law issues while remaining mindful of their overall wellness.
To discuss our helping with your situation, contact us today here.