Clients Matter.
So Does The Lawyer You Choose.

What is collaborative divorce?

On Behalf of | Apr 19, 2024 | Divorce |

People who are going through a divorce are faced with having to determine how to proceed. Mediation is one option. Alternative forms of uncontested divorce – including collaborative divorce – are others. Both of those are alternatives to going through a full-blown divorce trial.

Understanding exactly what collaborative divorce entails and how it works may help those interested in it decide if it is the best option for them.

Collaborative divorce process

Collaborative divorce is an alternative dispute resolution technique designed to minimize conflict and encourage amicable settlements without going to court. In this process, both parties hire their attorneys who are trained in collaborative law.

The critical principle of collaborative divorce is the mutual agreement that the parties will not engage in traditional litigation. Instead, the couple, their attorneys and sometimes other professionals like child custody specialists and financial advisors work together to negotiate a settlement that benefits both parties.

Benefits of collaborative divorce

One of the primary benefits of collaborative divorce is that it generally fosters a more amicable environment than traditional divorce. This approach emphasizes open communication and cooperation, which can be particularly beneficial for maintaining a cordial relationship post-divorce, especially when children are involved.

Collaborative divorce can also be more cost-effective than traditional divorce litigation since the process can be faster and doesn’t involve court fees. It also gives both parties more control over the outcome because they decide instead of relying on a judge.

Drawbacks of collaborative divorce

If the process fails, it can become more expensive than traditional methods. If the negotiations break down and the couple decides to proceed with litigation, they must hire new attorneys because their collaborative attorneys are barred from participating in the ensuing litigation due to the initial agreement not to litigate.

Additionally, the success of collaborative divorce heavily relies on the willingness of both parties to cooperate fully and disclose all relevant information. This might not be feasible in cases of significant mistrust or animosity.

Ultimately, going through a collaborative divorce is less contentious than litigation, but that doesn’t mean that it is always a straightforward journey. Seeking legal assistance is often critical because these cases can become very complex.