Anyone who has gone through a divorce will agree that it's one of life's most challenging experiences, with lots of opportunity for conflict and contention. But rather than fighting, how would it be to actually talk out the issues and come to a compromise that all parties can accept? Believe it or not, this is possible through a process called Collaborative Divorce, which is a A Positive Approach To Divorce.
What Is Collaborative Divorce?
The International Academy of Collaborative Professionals defines Collaborative Practice as “a voluntary dispute resolution process in which parties settle without resort to litigation.”
In the case of divorce, it can be challenging to sit in a room and discuss marital conflicts openly. That's why this process involves working with a collaborative divorce attorney and/or a collaborative team of professionals who provide the knowledge, support and encouragement to openly discuss and resolve your issues.
How Is It Different From Traditional Divorce Procedures?
Since clients create their own settlement terms rather than letting the court system take control of the outcome, they often notice a positive shift from traditional divorce customs to new options such as:
- Replacing rigid laws with flexible agreements
- Moving from controlling individuals to collaborating as a team
- Letting go of concrete positions to understand different perspectives
Through guided and supported discussion, everyone can begin to acknowledge the highest priorities of the situation and develop shared solutions to handle them in the best possible way.
Does It Work In Real Life?
A recent collaborative client experience shows that great things can happen when everyone is invested in a positive outcome.
During discussions, the wife shared her fear that post-divorce she would have to live in a rental apartment outside of her children's school district and that she would have to return to full-time work to pay for day care.
Her husband was concerned that he would have to work additional hours to keep his wife in their marital residence which would limit the time he could see his children. If she moved, he also worried about losing his job if he continually left early to drive to his wife's new home.
Both parties realized they were ultimately concerned about what was best for their children, so they worked with a collaborative team, including a neutral financial professional, and creatively found a way to purchase two new residences close to each other so both could spend time with their children while maintaining a realistic budget.
In the right situations, the collaborative process can be the key to a divorce with less tension and resolutions that work for everyone. Contact me to learn more about this process, how I can help with your specific situation, and how our clients utilize A Positive Approach To Divorce.
Schedule a Consultation with Attorney Erin Birt