There are a number of difficult decisions that need to be made during dissolution of marriage, from child support to property division. After the decision to divorce is made (In California – it only takes one party), the next important decision to be made involves the type of divorce process you and your soon-to-be-ex spouse will use.
The traditional choice is the litigation/courtroom system where each party hires their own zealous advocate to represent them. This involves classic positional bargaining. Many people get so entangled in a contentious and combative relationship that it evolves into litigation, appearing in court, and allowing a judge to make decisions. Other people choose a more respectful, cooperative and peaceful approach. This is where the consensual approaches of collaborative law and mediation can come in. These approaches are more likely to be less expensive both in financial and emotional costs.
If you are committed to ending a marriage in a peaceful way that preserves some sense of dignity and respect, a collaborative divorce could be the best solution for you. Rather than battle it out in court and leave critical decisions to be made by judges, you can opt for negotiation and mediation, which happens outside of the public courtroom and in private.
Collaborative law allows couples to work together to negotiate the terms of their divorce. Spouses work with a professional team of attorneys, financial and mental health specialists to find mutually agreeable resolutions. With this support, couples find the ability to communicate in a more positive manner and are able to discuss their goals and objectives in privacy.
Members of the Sacramento Collaborative Practice Group know how to work with all professionals from financial consultants to child therapists and counselors, in order to pursue a peaceful solution. We know that being committed to a collaborative divorce is an important decision and we work with spouses and others to ensure that this goal is reached.
By Hal Bartholomew, Attorney – Sacramento, CA.
Collaborative Divorce – a new process in which a divorcing couple, together with trained professional, work as a team to resolve disputes respectfully, without going to court.