What the Collaborative Divorce Process Involves
While divorces can be messy and time-consuming, it’s possible to avoid some of the frustrations that come with divorce by obtaining a collaborative one. In 2017, there were more than 787,000 divorces, which equates to a rate of 2.9 for every 1,000 people. If you’re seeking a divorce and you would like to explore the collaborative process, our divorce lawyer can help you understand more about this method and what it entails.
What Is a Collaborative Divorce?
This is a type of divorce that’s designed to eliminate the need to go to court by negotiating many of the issues that the divorcing couple has. This process can involve a series of negotiations in order to come to an agreement that both spouses agree on. Certain courts require the divorcing parties to attempt a collaborative divorce before going through with the litigation phase of the divorce, which occurs in court before a judge.
If the issues that you are having with your spouse are somewhat minimal in nature, this type of divorce may be possible for you and will allow you to avoid the lengthy process that comes with a court divorce. Everything from child custody and child support to property division can be negotiated during collaborative divorce proceedings.
What Are the Advantages of a Collaborative Divorce?
The benefits of obtaining a collaborative divorce as opposed to a contested divorce are numerous, the primary of which is that you will be able to save both time and money. When a divorce goes to court, there’s no way to be certain about when the divorce is going to be finalized. A collaborative divorce is much more straightforward with a timetable that’s dependent mainly on how fast you and your spouse are able to come to an agreement.
These proceedings also take place in an informal setting, which should be able to keep tempers from flaring while discussions are ongoing. It’s also important to understand that a collaborative divorce is one where you and your spouse have a substantial amount of control over the results of the divorce. When a divorce goes to court, the judge will have almost complete say over how your property is divided and what kind of spousal support is allotted. By making an agreement during a collaborative divorce, you may be able to avoid an unfavorable result for either party.
Collaborative Law Divorce Process
The collaborative divorce process begins with the hiring of attorneys who are familiar with this area of the law. Each party will hire their own attorney who understands how to progress through the mediation process. In many cases, the spouses will then speak with their attorneys privately to let them know exactly what they want from the mediation. While it’s possible that compromises may eventually need to be made, having a list of “demands” at the beginning will provide the attorney with a good starting point for the negotiations. To avoid prolonging the negotiation process, many spouses choose to provide their attorneys with lower limits that they are willing to accept. For instance, a spouse can demand weekly child support of $250 but set a lower limit that they are willing to go to of $150.
Both spouses will then meet along with their attorneys, which is a four-way meeting that will occur on a regular basis as negotiations continue. In the event that an agreement is proving to be difficult in some matters, it’s possible that a licensed mediator can be brought in to handle the negotiations. Once an agreement has been reached on all the particulars of a divorce, both spouses and their attorneys will be required to sign an agreement to avoid contesting their settlement in court, which denotes that the attorneys will remove themselves from the case if it continues to litigation despite the agreement. At this time, divorce papers can be filed, which can make for a very straightforward and seamless procedure.
If you’re thinking about starting the divorce process, call our divorce lawyer in Jenkintown today at (215) 886-1266 to schedule your first consultation and to learn more about the services we offer.