What is Collaborative Divorce?

A Collaborative Divorce uses the legal system to legally dissolve a marriage. But, instead of working through the traditional “adversarial” system, the husband and wife each retain an attorney who has had Collaborative Divorce training before the case is started. Before either spouse files for divorce, the parties and their Collaborative lawyers all sign a Participation Agreement, committing themselves to reach a settlement before the case is begun. A team approach is used to work through the legal, financial and emotional issues that arise in the transformation of the family. The team may be expanded as the parties and their Collaboratively trained lawyers agree, and may include divorce coaches, financial professionals, mediators, or a child specialist – all of whom are trained and committed to the collaborative process. Once all issues have been resolved and agreed, the parties join together in the filing of the divorce action where no issues are in dispute, and the process is respectfully and cost-effectively completed. Collaborative Divorce focuses on the future and puts children first. Through a Collaborative Divorce, new parenting relationships can get off to a positive start where parents actively plan together for their children’s restructured family life.