In many divorces, couples take matters to court seek resolution. Each side usually has a lawyer. Depending on the circumstances, fighting may continue/increase and communication may become non-existent.
The lawyers spend more time on the case, and the stress continues to rise for the parties. In many cases, the animosity continues and the parties ultimately end up putting their future, and that of their children in the hands of a judge. This is referred to as the “adversarial system”.
In many instances, there are alternatives for people to consider, including collaborative divorce and mediation.
Many couples are increasingly turning to collaborative divorce when their marriages end. In a collaborative divorce, each spouse hires a trained collaborative lawyer. Spouses sit down with their lawyers and talk through matters. Often, they bring additional professionals who can lend their perspectives. These include divorce coaches, financial neutrals and psychologists. The lawyers are tasked in this process to be problem solvers as opposed to adversaries.
If issues cannot be resolved through collaboration and if the spouses wish to go to court, the collaborative attorneys must withdraw from the case. New attorneys must be hired before the matter can be taken to court for the traditional adversarial process.
Our clients often find that, by sitting down and resolving issues, they can reduce the financial and emotional costs of divorce, as well as the impact on the children involved. Collaborative divorce also gives them more control over critical issues. It is also more private and avoids potentially embarrassing pleadings or motions being presented in a court. Further, instead of waiting for a judge’s decisions, they can make those decisions for themselves.
Collaborative divorce only works when the parties are willing and able to talk. The parties attempt to resolve their situation by sitting across the table with their attorney present with them.
At the HoganWillig Law Firm, attorneys Elizabeth DiPirro and Kevin Mahoney are trained collaborative divorce lawyers who focus their practice on family law. If you want discuss a collaborative divorce, contact us today at 636-7600.