For more than 30 years, people all over the United States and around the world have turned to the Collaborative Process as a peaceful, efficient, and effective way to divorce. Despite its growing popularity, Collaborative Practice remains much less well known than other divorce processes, such as litigation and mediation. So, what is Collaborative Practice, and how can you tell if it’s the right for you?
What is Collaborative Practice?
There are two features of Collaborative Practice that distinguish it from other ways you could divorce. First, when you choose Collaborative Practice, you and your spouse not only choose your own Collaborative Attorneys but may also invite other Collaboratively-trained professionals to join your Collaborative Team. Many Collaborative Teams include a Financial Advisor and a Divorce Coach, who serve as neutral advisors to both spouses, providing valuable support to help you create better, more efficient divorce resolutions. Some Teams also include other Collaboratively-trained professionals, such as a Child/Parenting Specialist, Mortgage Advisor, Special Needs Consultant, or others with special expertise in an area of need. Whether your Team includes only you and your spouse and your Collaborative Attorneys, or other specialized Team members, building the right Team for your divorce is one of the most important steps you will take during the Collaborative Process.
The second hallmark of Collaborative Process is the Participation Agreement. Choosing Collaborative Practice means committing to resolving your divorce without adversarial litigation. The Process begins with you and your spouse, and both Collaborative Attorneys, signing a formal, legally binding Participation Agreement that commits all of you to the Collaborative Process. The cornerstone of the Participation Agreement is the “Disqualification” provision, which will prohibit the Collaborative Attorneys from representing either you or your spouse in any adversarial litigation. Knowing that going to court would mean starting over with new attorneys serves as a powerful incentive to both you and your spouse to resolve your divorce Collaboratively.
Is Collaborative Practice right for you?
If you and your spouse are committed to resolving your divorce peacefully and would benefit from the support and expertise of a Collaborative Team, then choosing Collaborative Practice may be right for you. Our Collaboratively-trained attorneys, Josh Kershenbaum and Stacy Forchetti, can answer your questions and help connect you with other Collaborative professionals in the region. Contact us today!