La'Rae H. Hendrix P.A.

How does a collaborative divorce work?

The end of a marriage is never easy. Many people put off divorce because they are worried about the amount of time it will take, how much it will cost and the effect it will have on their children.

What if there was a way, however, that allowed you and your spouse to do it differently? That is what the collaborative divorce process offers.

At the beginning of the process, you, your spouse and both of your lawyers sign a pledge to work together in an open, honest and collaborative fashion to resolve your divorce without court intervention. Your attorneys will ask questions and offer possible solutions to keep the process moving forward.

If there is something you cannot agree on – such as the division of certain pieces of property or parenting time arrangements – you can bring in outside experts such as accountants and therapists to help you work toward a solution. These experts will be brought in jointly, and will not have an agenda that favors one side over the other.

The benefits of a collaborative divorce

There are numerous advantages to utilizing the collaborative divorce process. These include:

  • You and your spouse will remain in control of the process, instead of a judge who does not understand all of the details of your situation.
  • The costs are more predictable compared to litigation.
  • It is a voluntary process that you can withdraw from at any time.
  • Everyone involved – your lawyers and outside experts – all share the same goal of finding a mutually beneficial solution.
  • The process is conducted in a much more respectful way than litigation, which can turn bitter and emotional. If you have children, this will help you prepare to co-parent effectively.

It is important to remember, however, that a collaborative divorce is a voluntary process. That means it will only work if both spouses are actually committed to the same goal of finding a solution that allows everyone to move on with their lives.

That does not mean you will be happy with every detail of your divorce. However, by working together, you will likely complete your divorce faster while saving money and stress. If you think a collaborative divorce may be right for you, talk to an attorney who is certified in the process and can help you determine if it is the right fit.

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