Divorcing couples can opt to handle their family law matters through collaborative divorce. This increasingly popular area of alternative dispute resolution allows ex-spouses to hire attorneys to protect their individual rights while also avoiding contentious court proceedings.
Collaborative divorce is an attractive alternative to individuals who prefer to have more control over the decision making.
What is collaborative divorce?
Collaborative divorce is a cooperative process in which each party hires his or her own counsel. The attorneys work to reach a mutual divorce resolution through negotiations- not by taking on adversarial roles. The ex-spouses have the opportunity to work with their attorneys in an informal setting to resolve their disputes rather than a judge deciding.
After the parties come to an agreement, one of the lawyers will compile the divorce papers and settlement agreement to file with the court. The judge will review the documents and if approved, the ex-spouses avoid going to court at all.
What are the benefits of collaborative divorce?
The largest benefit is the control that the divorcing couple has over the outcome of the divorce. Professionals such as a real estate broker, child psychologist, financial planner and parenting coordinator work with the ex-spouses and attorneys to collaborate on the divorce resolutions. The perk of hiring these specialists is that the divorce terms fit the specific needs of that family, such as issues regarding minor children and the distribution of personal property and other assets.
Collaborative divorce is an excellent choice if the divorcing individuals can stay flexible and communicate openly with the attorneys and with each other.