Collaborative Divorce is a rather new process in New Jersey that takes a team approach to divorce.
Collaborative Divorce is an intelligent and dignified alternative to the traditional divorce process, gaining ground in New Jersey. The practice has grown over the past twenty years world-wide as an alternative between mediation and litigation. Collaborative Divorce is also known as “no-court divorce” and “peaceful divorce,” because children are a priority and the focus is on the family looking forward to respectful relationships in the future. Parties do not go to court until they have an agreement resolving all their issues.
Both parties are represented by a lawyer of their own choosing who offers traditional support, protection and guidance, but who is specifically trained in the collaborative style. Importantly, settlement negotiations take place in meetings with both spouses, their lawyers, and any other joint professionals the case may require. Open communication is encouraged. Collaboratively trained child specialists, financial specialists, divorce coaches along with other professionals work as a team to help the parties decide the best possible outcomes for their families. Decisions are not left to a court that could never understand the nuances of that particular family. Self-determination is an important hallmark of collaborative divorce. The structured setting encourages trust and objectivity in negotiations with minimal antagonism.
Like mediation, the collaborative process is private, unlike the traditional divorce where confidential and personal matters become public record.
Importantly, if the process fails, the parties must start over with new attorneys. Therefore, both parties must be on board and have the mindset to settle their case for the right reasons. The collaborative process will not fulfill a party’s need for vengeance or retribution if that’s their goal. Additionally, both parties must believe they can restore enough trust in the other to achieve a successful outcome. More information about Collaborative Divorce can be found at www.newjerseycollaborativelawgroup.com and www.collaborativepractice.com.