Voice of Reason: Initiating a Collaborative Divorce
We’re accustomed to seeing the traditional divorce that is depicted on television: combative clients, harrowed nerves, and dramatic testimonies in court. Or perhaps you may know someone who has gone through one of these emotionally stressful styles of divorce. These images can be very discouraging to the husband or wife considering divorce. However, this idea of divorce is not the only way. Over the course of several years, another form of divorce has been introduced, known as collaborative divorce. The name perfectly summarizes the idea behind this concept, which is a harmonious approach to obtaining a divorce that combines the efforts of both parties’ attorneys and the clients in a four-way cooperation without ever stepping foot in a courthouse. To a spouse who is blindsided by the idea of a divorce--and therefore more on edge-- suggesting a collaborative divorce may seem impossible. However, there are ways and times which are most beneficial for suggesting a collaborative divorce, which we’ll discuss in this article.
Collaborative divorce is a great way to streamline divorce and avoid the unnecessary conflicts and expenses that come with traditional divorce. When first considering the idea of divorce, images of standing in front of the court and presenting your testimony can be anxiety inducing. Additionally, the amount of preparation and resources it takes to get ready for court can add an extra layer of stress to the process. With collaborative divorce, going to trial is no longer necessary, and thus the clients are able to avoid the stress of added fees and testimony prep. Instead, both parties are able to meet on neutral grounds with their attorney separately and together to negotiate terms that they both feel comfortable with. Since they are able to avoid the extra time it would take for each attorney to draft up various motions and memorandums to gather information from the other party to take to court, this also saves both spouses additional expenses which may instead be used for a financial advisor or divorce coaches. Both parties are instead able to share all necessary information openly for the case to run smoothly.
Also allows all necessary information to be exchanged up front, rather than going through the lengthy process of a motion to compel the other party to provide the information your attorney needs.