When considering a divorce, there are a number of options that can help make the process quicker and less emotionally taxing. The concept of collaborative divorce has emerged in recent years as one way to make the divorce process easier through saved time, reduced costs, and less formality. Whether this process is done in Florida or any other state, the rules are not rigid and determined by the legislature, so collaboration can avoid the difficulties of learning the nuances of laws and court procedures for each state.
Collaborative professional help is a growing field that helps people achieve better outcomes during a number of difficult life events. The main goal of collaborative professionals is to help people find long term solutions for their problems that will be sustainable and avoid certain procedural difficulties.
Defining collaborative divorce
Collaborative divorce is basically a catch all term for any kind of negotiations related to a divorce that take place outside of a normal courtroom setting. Over the last several decades, divorces and family law procedures have been changing to become more efficient and streamlined. Collaborative divorces are one of the concepts that has resulted from this process, where a couple may only need outside help with sorting out a few key issues. A neutral third-party will get involved with a process of mediation or negotiation to “collaborate” with the two spouses to reach a binding agreement regarding issues such as property division, finances, and child custody. Ideally, this will feel more like a natural conversation or dialogue than a formal court hearing regarding the same issues.
Negotiations may be required
In some situations, the courts have required divorcing couples to try to mediate or negotiate before they are allowed to involve the courts in their dispute. This is done to reduce their own costs and keep their dockets more manageable.
These alternatives and new requirements demonstrate that collaborative divorce is here to stay and many couples will benefit from going through this streamlined process rather than traditional litigation. Some of these benefits include savings of time and money, and the ease of not having to follow strict rules of court procedure.
Preparing for a collaborative divorce
Some of the preparations for this kind of divorce do tend to appear very similar to normal divorce proceedings. Each spouse should still retain their own lawyer and go over things like finances, property, or potential child custody issues with them. These initial meetings often frame the issues that are important and may be contested later on, as there are usually some points for each party that do not lend themselves to compromise. It also helps to seek out a lawyer who is experienced in these kinds of negotiations as well as family law generally, as collaborative divorce tends to be more relaxed and less contested than litigation in a courtroom setting.
Many of the most important meetings that will occur during collaborative forms of divorce require the presence of both spouses and their attorneys. These meetings are where crucial pieces of information will be exchanged, and most of the debate will also likely occur at these times related to the evidence presented and each spouse attempting to get the best deal out of the process.
Once this process is mediated successfully, a formal divorce settlement agreement and dissolution of marriage can be filed with the local courts and become legally binding.
Talk to a lawyer about the possibility of collaborative divorce
The Aikin Family Law Group provides a significant amount of information related to the process of getting a collaborative divorce on their website. Couples in the Orlando area who think this may be their best option can receive advice regarding their particular situation.