The traditional way of divorcing your spouse by litigating the matter in court has a lot of downsides. Litigation is a contentious process that may escalate the conflict between you and your spouse. This can make co-parenting more difficult and less pleasant for everyone, including your children. Neither you nor your spouse have any control of the process and may end up dissatisfied with the decisions the judge hands down.
Collaborative divorce is an alternative to litigation designed to minimize conflict. Unlike mediation, it provides you with the support and encouragement of a professional who can advise you on legal matters and help you present your side effectively. The collaborative process uses several techniques to resolve the issues in your divorce without escalating conflict.
Collaborative divorce involves a team of professionals trained in the process to offer advice and guidance to you and your spouse. In addition to you, your spouse and attorneys representing each of you, professionals on your collaborative team can include child specialists, financial professionals and counselors. These professionals help foster open, honest communication between you and your spouse and keep the discussion productive.
A key element of collaborative divorce is a commitment to the process from all parties that you will make every effort to reach a workable agreement rather than going to court. All members of the team must sign a written pledge acknowledging their commitment to the process.
Either you or your spouse may choose to walk away from the process at any time, but the consequence is that no member of your collaborative team, including your respective attorneys, can help you once you take the case to court.
The collaborative process takes the emphasis off airing grievances and finding fault. Instead, it focuses on solving shared problems and finding workable solutions.