If you’re heading into a separation, visions of angry lawyers, arguments and anxiety are likely dancing through your mind – and with good reason. A divorce can put serious mental and financial pressure on an individual, especially if the process seemingly takes forever.
That’s why collaborative divorce offers a different outlook on an otherwise tedious (and expensive) process that leaves both parties feeling hurt, angry and exhausted. The collaborative process works towards an agreement that everyone’s happy with – instead of leaving it to the hands of a judge. This means there’s no threat of going to court; everything is handled between the two parties and their legal counsel.
How a Collaborative Divorce Differs from Adversarial Divorce Proceedings
Adversarial divorce typically holds two legal counsel members each working to try and “win” the best deal for their client. It puts the two parties involved at extreme odds, creating a tense and stressful environment for everyone involved. Generally speaking, adversarial divorce normally ends up in a “win-lose” situation; but the reality is simply that no one party really wins.
Collaborative divorce works by shifting the resources from “winning” to working together. By working together, the parties agree to come up with a plan that includes everyone’s concerns and needs. Lawyers work with each other (and their respective parties) to draft a solution that is best for everyone. A collaborative divorce allows each party to communicate with respect and openness – avoiding the negativity and angst that typically follows.
Why Collaborative Divorce is Easier on Everyone
Unlike adversarial divorce, a collaborative agreement offers a private agreement between two parties – that can be flexible to unique circumstances or positions. Standard adversarial divorce requires public records of all proceedings, meaning the divorce is accessible by virtually anyone who wants to know.
A collaborative process allows each party to maintain more control of the process and end result too; avoiding a judgment by avoiding the standard court process altogether. The lawyers will work to contain any conflict between the two parties, instead of placing blame, accusation and arguments between them. This means a higher level of emotional support and involvement – instead of the stress and aggravation (you no longer have to be on the defensive side).
Finally, as both parties are working to resolve matters without court involvement, the financial pressures that normally arise with court proceedings are kept minimal. This is especially true for families hoping to maintain their assets or financial circumstances.