Mary Ann reassures the true value of resolution in divorce.
MARY ANN HESS: I am Mary Ann Hess, and I am the managing member of Folks Hess Kass. When I speak with people about the possibility of using a collaborative law process in resolving their family-law issue or a civil-litigation case, one of the things I think is important to focus on is that there is value in resolution, whether it’s the value in the cost savings, the value of your time, and the value of your emotions that, if you can focus on a process that allows you to address resolution upfront after there’s been full financial disclosure, after you’ve had the opportunity to work with a neutral financial professional, after you’ve had the opportunity to work for a communications coach if that’s needed for the two of you, then you can start focusing on getting that value.
So while I talked about the value of resolution in a collaborative divorce process, there are other ways to come to resolution. One of those ways is litigation. You can go through the formal discovery process, which is going to include written documentation, subpoenas, depositions, argument before the court, and then your resolution is going to come from the judge telling you how it’s going to be. If you don’t like it, it may be the court of appeals that tells you how it’s going to be, and then when does it end?
There’s also mediation. Mediation is a fantastic process, but generally, the issue with mediation is it comes when you’re well into the process. Sometimes it comes immediately before trial and you’ve expended all of the resources to get to that point to talking about getting your value and resolution.
In collaborative divorce, you immediately start with that being your goal and start gathering the information so that you can get that va
lue and resolution.