Collaborative divorce is gaining popularity in the United States as a civil alternative to traditional court litigation.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that one in two marriages in America end in divorce, leaving more and more people looking for ways to terminate their marriage. Contrary to what some might think, divorce is not one size fits all. Although it may be best for some couples to leave the details of their divorce settlement in the hands of the North Carolina legal system, others might choose to arrange their own terms of separation, including child custody, spousal support and property division, in a more civil manner.
What is collaborative divorce?
The collaborative divorce process allows couples to discuss the matters of their separation and ultimately create their own divorce settlement under the guidance of their attorneys. According to Thinkadvisor.com, couples who wish to enter into the collaborative divorce process must sign an agreement to base all of their decisions on what is best for everyone involved. This requires both partners to fully disclose all information that may help the other spouse make decisions regarding the final settlement.
Each party must be fully prepared to finalize the divorce by working out the settlement details during the negotiations process. If for some reason, the couple cannot come to a final agreement regarding the divorce decree arrangement, they may choose to take their case to court.
Advantages of collaborative divorce
Couples who harbor resentment or who have heated emotions toward one another should avoid going through a collaborative divorce. Those who do choose to go through with the process may enjoy several benefits when compared to a traditional court divorce. According to Thinkadvisor.com and the Huffington Post, the advantages of going through a collaborative divorce are:
- Couples are more likely to maintain a positive relationship through the collaborative process. Parents or business partners who are required to interact with one another once the divorce is finalized may feel more amicable toward each other.
- Couples are able to customize their divorce settlement agreement according to the unique needs of their separation. The American Bar Association reports that couples are more likely to comply with their divorce decree when they have had a part in creating it.
- Couples can finalize their divorce much quicker than they would in a court setting, which can take months or years to complete. Through the collaborative process, a settlement can be created in as little as one or two negotiation sessions.
Collaborative divorce is often much less expensive than a court divorce, as there are no court costs associated with the separation. Couples also save money from avoiding settlement disputes through their attorneys.
Contacting an attorney
Before you enter into a collaborative divorce, make sure that you partner with an established family law attorney who can guide you through the process. A lawyer can offer personalized representation and help you make the right decisions regarding your divorce settlement.
Keywords: collaborative divorce, litigation, separation