Collaborative Divorce is marketed as the “Kinder, Gentler Divorce”. Its distinguishing characteristic is that it uses a team concept rather than adversarial approach. The purpose of the team is to help couples make decisions that are appropriate for them.
The team composition varies depending upon the couple’s specific circumstances but there are always two attorneys. In addition, there may be one or two mental health professionals, and a financial
There are times that other specialists may also be involved when specific issues, unique to the family, are warranted; such as a child specialist, mortgage specialist, or business evaluator.
Although I do financial work for both types of divorcing couples, from my personal observation, I would say that there are benefits to collaborative divorce that make it preferable to litigation. It is the
form of divorce I recommended to a member of my own family.
Is collaborative divorce suitable for all divorces? No. However, it is underutilized as an alternative process to litigation.
Benefits that I have observed from the collaborative process.
1. There are no guarantees but the divorce team works together to help couples get divorced in a respectful manner.
2. The process encourages dialogue and problem solving between the divorcing spouses which can continue into the post divorce future when necessary.
3. Most importantly, I have been told by mental health professionals and other financial planners that children of divorce parents are more well-adjusted than those that experienced, first hand, acrimonious, litigated divorces.
If you are interested in more information about this process, I suggest you check the following link:
International Academy of Collaborative Professionals