Once a decision has been made to divorce, most couples really can manage the transition from married to no-longer- married with the assistance and support of well trained professionals. There was a time in every relationship where you and your partner were successful at problem-solving, at compromising, at making decisions together. This was true even if the power dynamic and the knowledge dynamic was not balanced. In fact, in every relationship we complement each other’s areas of competence, areas of interest and spheres of responsibility.
If you can choose a divorce process which plays to your strengths as a couple and doesn’t exploit the anger, sense of betrayal, fear and anxiety that accompanies every divorce, you will be laying the groundwork for a healthy life after divorce. It matters that you choose a process which best reflects your own sense of integrity or you will prolong the pain of this divorce far into the future.
Collaborative divorce, done with very skilled, specially trained professionals, can move you through this difficult time, with respect and care.
What is collaborative law:
- Collaborative law is voluntary so you both have to agree to be engaged in the process and either one may opt out at any time.
- You are required to be completely transparent and fully disclose all the information pertinent to your situation.
- 98% of the time the collaborative law process results in an agreement which reflects the goals of the parties, meets the needs of their family and lays the groundwork for effective communication going forward.
- Each party is represented by a specially trained collaborative attorney. You are never alone ‘at the table’ to advocate for yourself.
- The negotiations happen in face-to-face meetings, with the parties always present and fully engaged.
- If the process fails, for any reason, the attorneys have to withdraw and cannot become your litigation counsel.
- Often other professionals are incorporated into the collaborative process, such as a neutral financial expert who works with both parties, or a neutral coach to help manage the emotional issues which are sure to come up in any divorce. If the case does not conclude successfully the other professionals have to withdraw as well and cannot be used in the litigation.
Since the way you get divorced is your choice, use the information on this web site to educate yourself, ask a collaborative attorney good questions, and think about how you will feel once the divorce process is over and you look back at how you handled yourself, how you created a ‘future after divorce.’