Written By: Anne B. Parsons, Ph.D.
In a Collaborative Divorce, the spouses agree to stay out of court and work together with the help of divorce professionals to develop their own settlement agreement that is based on the needs of the spouses and their family.
Positives Aspects of the Collaborative Process
Collaborative Divorce is focused on the people involved. The process treats people like people and offers both parties respect without the nastiness generated by the litigation process. Some specific benefits of a Collaborative Divorce are:
- Everyone has a voice.
- The focus is on moving forward.
- The spouses control their own future. Together, they build the relationship they need to have for living separately.
- They have the benefit of working with neutral professionals who guide them and support them in their decision-making.
- The focus is on communicating to the benefit of both parties through honest conversations to reach resolutions both people agree on.
- The goal is to divorce, not decimate. The spouses learn how to co-parent their children without animosity.
- The spouses control the timeline and are not at the mercy of the court’s schedule.
Negative Aspects of Traditional Litigation
Traditional litigation pits the spouses against each other with both trying to be the winner. It can be a lengthy process, especially when courts are backlogged, and it is difficult to get a hearing date.
Families get ripped apart. The issues are decided by a judge who doesn’t know the family. But it doesn’t have to be this way. The spouses can choose a Collaborative Divorce and make the decisions for themselves.
A Collaborative Divorce attorney recently shared that, “My parents divorced in 1984. Their attorneys wanted litigation, but they refused. It gave me a model that parents CAN work together.”
Another said that “I would do my whole practice Collaborative if I could. I wish it existed when I divorced.”
Collaborative Divorce New Hampshire is an organization representing lawyers, mental health professionals and financial professions throughout New Hampshire. You can find a professional near you on the professional’s page https://collaborativedivorcenh.com/professionals/.