Typical divorces involve the divorcing couple, at least two attorneys, a judge and possibly other people involved in the court system. The divorce results are determined by a judge and the timing of the divorce is subject to the court’s schedule. A new trend in divorce is taking the court out of the picture and leaving the divorce up to the couple to negotiate.
In a collaborative divorce, the negotiations and results of the conflict are left up to the spouses with the help of attorneys who are experienced in this type of divorce as well as a mediator instead of a judge. The purpose of this type of proceeding is to keep the negotiations peaceful and productive rather than contentious and combative.
In many divorces, couples enter the courtroom ready to do battle instead of having a mindset where there are simple conflicts that need to be resolved. This type of approach may not lead to the best interests of the couple or children being met.
Collaborative divorce differs from typical divorce mediation in that there are several people involved instead of just the mediator and the divorcing couple. The husband and wife each have their own attorney, and the group identifies the issues and collaborates to come up with resolutions to the problems. In a typical divorce, each side would present an argument to a judge in a court of law to convince him to rule on their behalf. In a collaborative divorce, both sides work together and do not leave the decision up to a third party.
Couples who are planning to divorce may benefit from this collaborative approach, especially if there are children involved in the marriage. Anyone considering this type of divorce in New Jersey should start by consulting a legal professional who can advise them on how to get the process started.
Source: CNBC, “Collaborative divorce can ease emotional, economic stress” Deborah Nason, May. 02, 2014