In our previous post, we began looking at the topic of alternative ways to resolve divorce cases. We’ve already mentioned litigation, negotiated divorces, and mediation. Here we’ll make extended mention of a process frequently referred to as collaborative divorce.
Collaborative divorce refers to an arrangement whereby a couple agrees to resolve their differences outside the adversarial process and to work things out in a setting of privacy and confidentiality. Collaborative divorce is similar to mediation in this sense, but it can be distinguished by the fact that trained professionals are often brought into the process.
So in a collaborative divorce, parties may both be represented by an attorney. What is unique about it is that other professionals may get involved. Couples may find it useful to bring in financial experts to resolve any questions regarding projected costs or other matters touching on the financial aspect of property division. Mental health professionals are sometimes consulted to help couples work through their differences. In short, a team of professionals is involved in the process according to the needs of the couple.
Collaborative divorce can be a great way to resolve disputes in divorce, but it just doesn’t work for everybody. The usefulness of the process depends on the needs and peculiarities of the couple, who ultimately has authority over how they choose to proceed with their divorce.
Before deciding on any particular path to resolve disputes in divorce, it is helpful to know one’s options. Collaborative law may be an option for some couples. Those interested in pursuing this process should consult with an attorney who is familiar with it and willing to work in that way—not all attorneys view the process favorably.