Collaborative divorce is the latest method of alternative dispute resolution in family law. Attorneys for both parties agree to help clients resolve conflicts by implementing cooperative techniques rather than litigation or other adversarial strategies. Parties and their attorneys enter into a Participation Agreement, where it is agreed that is a resolution cannot be achieved, the attorneys will withdraw and not participate in litigation.
Provisions in the Participation Agreement: Attorney John B. Shepherd
The Participation Agreement sets out commitments and provision in collaborative divorce. Provisions include:
- Issues will be settled using interest-based negotiations
- Parties will rely on their attorneys to reach a settlement
- Parties will act in their children’s best interests to minimize emotional damage as a result of the separation
- All communications during the collaborative process will be fair and constructive
- Neutral experts may be retained
- The status quo will be maintained with no changes to insurance coverages, assets or other matters
- Reasons for withdrawing from the process
Why Use Collaborative Divorce?
Collaborative divorce works well for those who have a family. It requires that partners act as sensible adults and reach a fair solution for everyone. Plus, it addresses more than just the legal issues. It looks at the grand scale picture and keeps emotional issues intact. Children should not have to see their parents battling in court over who gets what. This display of hostility is unfair and inconsiderate to them. Even though you are parting ways, collaborative divorce allows for everyone to work together to get what’s best. Collaborative divorce results in a negotiated settlement without the conflict and costs of traditional litigation. It is an atmosphere that is less stressful and respectful. However, this method of divorce is not for every situation or everyone. It requires that the parties involved commit to working with each other instead of against each other in order to achieve results.
Collaborative divorce attorneys like John B. Shepherd help guide clients through a process of cooperative conflict by implementing disagreement as a way to achieve creative solutions to problems. They identify issues and concerns and foster respectful communication to promote the interest of both sides. The attorneys also cooperate with each other in providing necessary disclosure and discovery.