Couples choosing collaborative divorce agree from the outset not to battle in court. Instead, they sit down with professionals and work out settlements that meet the goals of their families. They pledge that if either spouse wants to bring the dispute to court, both spouses must retain new litigation counsel.
This agreement fundamental to the collaborative process, keeps the parties at the negotiating table and requires attorneys to find creative resolutions rather than resorting to the court to intervene in an impasse.
For clients, the collaborative process offers a number of benefits. Their children are always treated as a priority, and everyone on the team works to maintain and support the couple’s ability to co-parent their children. The couple also keeps control of the timing of the process, unlike litigated cases where the court dictates the time frame. They can move more quickly or more slowly than a court would require, and can reach informal temporary agreements quickly and efficiently when necessary, rather than filing a series of motions that often result in court Orders that impede, rather than encourage settlement. The process is confidential so sensitive financial and personal information doesn’t enter the public domain. Keeping the process outside of court until an agreement is reached eliminates hours spent in court for case management and other court-required events, saving legal costs and the client’s time.