As you research your options for divorce, chances are, you’ve stumbled upon the option for a collaborative divorce. But, what exactly is a collaborative divorce and is it right for you? In this article, we’ll explore the pros and cons of collaborative divorce.
What is a Collaborative Divorce?
A collaborative divorce means that both parties (and their attorneys) agree to work together. And to find the absolute best outcome for all parties involved, rather than opting for the adversarial approach.
With a collaborative divorce, you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse decide to work with attorneys, and as needed, other professionals. The goal is a satisfying result that meets the needs of all parties, including your kids.
There are a number of pros and cons when it comes to collaborative divorce. Therefore, it’s important to fully weigh your options to make the best choice for you and your specific circumstances. Here’s what you should know about some of the most common pros and cons of collaborative divorce.
Pros of Collaborative Divorce
There are a number of benefits you can expect when you choose a collaborative divorce. While every situation is unique, here are some of the most common benefits you can expect with a collaborative divorce.
- Confidential and Discreet – The process is generally kept confidential and bypasses the court process. Everything you file in court is public, but collaborative divorce means very few papers are ever filed. You mutually agree on the language that is put in court papers.
- Expert Services – Work with your soon-to-be-ex-spouse and consult together with family law experts in various fields. Financial experts and mental health care professionals can help create tax advantages and prepare you for each phase of your transition.
- Less Time Wasted – Spend less time waiting for your case to finish, and move on with your life faster. With less time spent filing motions, seeking temporary orders that may have no effect on the ultimate outcome, you have more time to work towards what really matters.
- Voluntary Process – Because the collaborative process is voluntary, it’s more likely that both parties are ‘on the same page’ when you negotiate and finalize agreements. This means both you and your soon-to-be-ex are more likely to honor your contractual agreement post-divorce.
- Preserve Relationships – A collaborative divorce puts an end to the ugly, messy divorce and encourages healthy relationships between all parties involved.
- Reduce Financial Burden – In most cases, the cost of a collaborative divorce is a fraction of the cost of a divorce through court proceedings.
Cons of Collaborative Divorce
As with most things in life, there are some potential cons to the collaborative divorce process. In order to make a well-informed decision, it’s important to understand every aspect of this process. Here’s what you should know about the potential drawbacks of a collaborative divorce.
As you enter into a collaborative divorce, you and your partner must sign a contract that binds the two of you to work together in all aspects of the process. Very few collaborative law cases result in no agreement, but the lack of an agreement is a risk. If the two of you cannot reach an agreement in the collaborative process, you must retain different attorneys to handle the court proceedings. This means both parties will be responsible for the additional costs of a new attorney if one of you refuses to agree.
In addition, when you choose a collaborative divorce, you must trust the process. You may not trust your partner fully, but that is where the process becomes important. In collaborative process, if one party is hiding information, their lawyer must confront that issue. During this process, both sides must fully disclose assets and debts in an open and honest manner. If honesty and openness were typically struggles during the marriage, you may make a shift to integrity in collaborative process.
Exploring the Pros and Cons of Collaborative Divorce
When you are considering your options for divorce, choosing a collaborative process may be the right choice for you. Best Legal Choices helps families throughout Arizona find professionals to help them through the collaborative divorce process.
If you have questions or need to speak with someone about collaborative divorce, visit us online and find a professional now!