Collaborative divorce has many benefits for the participants, but it’s important to bear in mind that some principles and procedures should be understood before engaging with the process. One of the biggest accomplishments that many couples are able to point to at the end of a collaborative divorce case is that they were able to minimize issues of conflict. That being said, collaborative divorce asks that parties play an active role in reaching a mutually beneficial resolution.
Resolution Without Court Intervention
Parties and the professionals involved in the case need to agree to make every effort to resolve all issues without having to go the traditional courtroom route. Although some issues may get heated, parties should always remember that the best and most agreeable results will come from being able to work through issues to reach shared solutions. If the disputing parties are unable to reach common ground, they may regret it later when they’re involved in the lengthy litigation process.
Be Knowledgeable About Disclosure
Individuals should also be aware that they are responsible for being open and honest in disclosure about issues involving the divorce. In a traditional scenario, stalling or hiding information can be extremely problematic, especially when that contributes to a delay of the case. Parties can prepare themselves by expecting to provide details about financial assets and other relevant information in a collaborative divorce case. This is a two-way street and the best results will come when both parties are forthcoming with details.
Move Forward With Respect
Each person involved in collaborative divorce, whether it’s the parties themselves or the professionals involved in helping them reach a solution is responsible for being upfront if they discover inaccuracies or a failure of professional responsibility with regard to the case. For this reason, collaborative divorce is often seen as a team effort. Expect that your professionals will guide you through the process and help you maintain a civil and productive relationship with the other party. This will lead to a better outcome for the divorce as well as for life after the divorce.
Keep an Open Mind
Each party is responsible for representing his or own interests in a collaborative divorce and articulating his or her own opinions. Nonetheless, in order to reach agreement, it is useful to keep an open mind and maintain realistic expectations. Don’t be afraid to articulate your concerns to your legal representation but bring up issues with mutual respect.