Collaborative Divorce – Tampa
Are you looking for information about a collaborative divorce Tampa? We will discuss what is a collaborative divorce and give you an understanding of how it works.
Collaborative divorce can safeguard your children and family privacy, as well as your finances. Escape the stress, aggravation, suffering and an unknown outcome of the traditional divorce court battle. By going through the Collaborative divorce process, you can construct and maintain your own agreements rather than taking a chance on a judge.
Once engaged in the traditional court-centered divorce, many couples wish they had a different option. The Collaborative divorce process provides a way that both spouses together can accomplish an acceptable divorce resolution that is almost entirely done out of court. Additionally, this divorce process provides each spouse with their own lawyer but limits the role of counsel so that the divorce does not turn into a prolonged adversarial showdown.
Collaborative Divorce vs. Traditional Divorce
Almost everyone feels similarly that divorce is a tough ordeal to go through. Divorce is not cheap for anyone, even if you don’t think that there is much to fight about, the cost will surprise you. The other problem is when you and your spouse each retains your own attorneys. Each of you will be made aware of rights that you did not know you had and suddenly things are more complicated than originally thought. Issues such as property division/equitable distribution, alimony, child support, and child custody issues make this process overwhelming.
But wait, there is hope and that is called a collaborative divorce.
Your Collaborative Divorce lawyer will assist you in using a neutral mediator, financial professional and/or mental health professional in your divorce based on your objectives. Your collaborative divorce attorney will also collect information, suggest resolutions, negotiate, and prepare your agreement. In contrast to a traditional adversarial divorce procedure, the attorneys for each spouse work together for a common resolution while protecting each parties interest.
While the traditional divorce process usually involves swapping demands and blame, the collaborative method continues on the foundation of team work, mutual respect and agreed upon solutions.
What Is Collaborative Divorce?
Collaborative divorce law is the new type of family and marital alternative dispute resolution. The great thing about this type of divorce is that it can lower the stress and fighting typically associated with a traditional divorce. The traditional fighting is replaced with a joint direction to negotiate and resolve amicably. Collaborative divorce incorporates the process of mediated negotiations in order to settle the divorce. In order for the collaborative divorce to best work for you, you and your spouse should be cooperative about the process. Reluctance or unwillingness to keep an open mind through the negotiations will ultimately doom this type of peaceful divorce.
Collaborative Divorce Benefits
Here are some of the benefits associated with a collaborative divorce:
- Cost savings
- Financial preservation for both children and families
- Continued family relationships beyond divorce
- Not many hearings to attend
- Discovery requests are basically open, informal, more relaxed exchange of relevant information
- Time saver
- Post settlement disputes are more negotiable
- Jointly negotiated resolution without court intervention
- Open communication and exchange of information between parties
- Greater privacy, since there are no court hearings
Another huge draw to this type of dissolution process is that it is easier on the children as they do not see the mixed and unpredictable range of emotions exhibited by both parents in a traditional divorce.
Collaborative Divorce Attorney
The collaborative divorce attorney is vastly different from the traditional family law trial lawyer. The collaborative divorce lawyer does not intimidate, pressure or dwell on wrongs from the past. Instead your collaborative attorney will be a source of support and reassurance in order to help you recognize and realize your goals and work towards an agreeable settlement. Your Collaborative Divorce Attorneys duties will include:
- Help in collecting and analyzing information
- Examining the specific needs and concerns in order to prepare an appropriate settlement
- Assisting in the evaluation of proposed solutions from legal precedent
- Preparing and executing proper documents with the goal to ultimately finalize the divorce
Financial Collaborative Divorce Professional
Generally, in a divorce, one spouse is less apprised about the family’s financial situation. The uninformed spouse might exhibit a range of feelings such as doom, despair, apathy or overpowered by fear. The financial collaborative divorce professional will be able to guide the less informed spouse to a clear picture of the couple’s financial state in a nonadversarial setting. The duties of the financial collaborative divorce professional include:
- Compiling all of the couple’s financial information
- Establishing the couple’s net worth
- Work up alternative financial support options for clients to review
- Prepare financial assistance, preparation and budget constraints during the divorce with post-divorce followup
- Make clear all tax consequences and their respective possible scenarios
- Assess the couple’s assets and debt
Collaborative Divorce Mental Health Professional
A collaborative divorce mental health professional is a licensed in mental health with additional special training in collaborative divorce. The mental health professional compliments the other professionals that are involved in the collaborative process with specialized skills that enhance communication between spouses in a healthy and productive manner. The collaborative divorce mental health professional aids spouses in:
- Facilitating and strengthening skills in effective communication
- Becoming aware of the dynamics in the relationship as well as the recognition and avoidance of negative emotional triggers
- Avoiding and managing emotional stalemates
- Emotional preparation for the collaborative conferences
- Developing parenting and co-parenting plans and strategies in order to assist with the change to two households
Collaborative Divorce Procedure?
So how do you start the process of a collaborative divorce?
The first step in a collaborative divorce Tampa is the hiring of a family law divorce attorney by each party. When selecting your attorney, look for an attorney that understands the collaborative process and mediation as a means to help you reach a fair negotiation for your divorce. Furthermore, an attorney that loves going to trial will not be the right person to represent you as the collaborative approach is much different.
Both spouses are an essential part of the team. Collaborative divorce attorneys see their professional duties distinctive from litigation lawyers. In a Collaborative Divorce, counsel for the spouses act as partners in helping the couple solve problems rather than adversaries.
Although the collaborative process involves an agreement between spouses, be sure to privately meet with your attorney. Let your attorney know what type of outcome you hope to achieve and what is most important to you. The whole process is about compromise, but the good news is that what your spouse is willing to compromise you might really want and vice versa. The same should be applied to the negotiations dealing with child support and alimony. You and your attorney will have to come up with a game plan early in the process so that the whole process will run efficiently.
Once you have prepared with your attorney a meeting will be set with your spouse and their attorney, to discuss the overall desires of both parties. Generally, in a collaborative divorce these meetings that include both parties and their counsel are a regular occurrence. Usually several issues are addressed at each meeting in order to negotiate those issues to completion and move on to others. Additionally, other third party professionals are usually present at these meetings such as accountants, child psychologists. The third-party professionals are advising both parties as a collective so as not to have bias in favor of any party. When an issue arises that cannot be resolved, a mediator is brought in to assist. Mediators are usually practicing family law attorneys or retired ones who are well versed in divorce law and can strategically lead the parties to a resolution.
One of the key differences between a collaborative divorce and a traditional one is the “no-court” agreement. This agreement is signed by both parties and their respective attorneys and instructs the attorneys in the event the case goes to litigation, to immediately withdraw in representing the parties.
Once the collaborative divorce is concluded, your attorneys will file your divorce papers with a settlement agreement as an uncontested divorce as all of the issues have been negotiated. The judge will then issue a final order granting your divorce. Uncontested divorces are granted much quicker over contested divorces.
As you can see the litigation stress, financial costs, and time savings are just a few of the benefits in going with a collaborative divorce in Florida.