What is Collaborative Divorce?
With collaborative divorce, each person retains their own attorney as in the ‘traditional’ divorce process. The difference is that the couple and their attorneys work in a collaborative manner rather than in an adversarial manner. The first requirement for using the collaborative process is for the couple to agree that they want to settle their divorce without going to court. The second requirement is that they agree to work through the process in a respectful, cooperative manner.
Each spouse works with their own attorney to lay out a ‘proposal’ covering the various matters to be settled such as property division, alimony, child custody, and child support. The spouses and their attorneys then attend meetings together and try to come to an agreement on all matters. The services of a neutral financial advisor can be used as well.
In addition to the attorneys and a neutral financial advisor, collaborative divorces may include mental health professionals who provide divorce-related counseling to all members of the family. They also provide input to the process such as the children’s preferences regarding a visitation schedule.
If you think a collaborative divorce might work for you and your spouse, an Albrecht & Albrecht divorce attorney can give you a free consultation to answer any questions you may have.