It is a sad fact that divorce can often be an emotionally charged, stressful and it can be an expensive process. Therefore, collaborative lawyering has become extremely popular in the last decade. The collaborative divorce approach encourages the parties to work together with their lawyers to reach resolutions that are mutually beneficial. With a collaborative divorce lawyer, you will have access to expert legal advice while maintaining your relationship with your spouse and your children.
What is the collaborative method?
Former lawyers who wanted to provide clients with more legal options than were previously available under traditional litigation models created the collaborative divorce method in 1989. That model continues today but has evolved into collaborative practice methods used in most states across the country.
Who are collaborative lawyers?
Collaborative lawyers are able-bodied participants who help mediate out of court settlement agreements that are then memorialized in collaborative law documents. They also provide guidance about the fiscal impact of your separation or divorce, so you can decide based upon what is best for both parties without regard to who “wins” and who “loses.”
Benefits over traditional adversarial proceedings:
- Preserving relationships between co-parents after children leave home.
- Flexibility in resolving issues.
- Cost savings can be reinvested in the family.
Collaborative law solutions to many types of disputes, including:
- Child custody and visitation schedule modifications.
- Parenting plan development.
- Business valuations for fair distribution or maintenance payments during a settlement period, etc.
- Financial disclosure requirements under collaborative law statutes (i.e., what records each party must turn over).
- Complex financial issues such as tax liabilities, retirement accounts, pension plans.
Does the collaborative approach work?
The collaborative approach works because it takes away court-imposed timetables on when cases must be resolved and allows each spouse or partner time to explore options without feeling rushed. Both collaborative divorce lawyers and collaborative law processes rely on the active participation of the parties to solve their problems. This model allows couples to decide about what they can afford based upon their own resources, without resorting to one person paying another or “winning” at someone else’s expense.
How can a collaborative lawyer help me?
Collaborative lawyers help you avoid court-imposed deadlines by giving you time for reflection between sessions with your spouse. They also provide guidance on how best to engage in settlement discussions so that each party feels heard while exploring options collaboratively through mediation rather than just advocating for what he or she wants during negotiations with his/her former partner over an extended period outside of court under collaborative lawyering.
Under collaborative lawyering, each party has access to his/her own collaborative lawyer, who guides negotiations between them while they attempt to resolve their disputes. Unlike traditional litigation models where one person pays another (or wins at the other’s expense), under the collaborative practice model, everyone works together collaboratively towards the resolution of any outstanding issues connected with children, finances, and family dynamics. A couple decides jointly through mediation whether a collaborative divorce lawyer or collaborative law process is right for their family situation.
The collaborative process can also be a great option for parents who are still committed to their children and want to maintain a healthy relationship with one another. If you’re ready to put the past behind you and focus on a collaborative divorce beneficial for everyone, find one today.