The dissolution of marriage is a stressful process. Anyone who has been or is going through it would tell you this. It simply is the nature of divorce. There are alternatives to traditional divorce proceedings, though, that can make this daunting thing a little easier to handle. Collaborative law is an option for couples in Pennsylvania who wish to end their marriages. What is this and how can it be beneficial to you?
Simply put, a collaborative divorce is one in which each spouse agrees to work together to come to settlement terms.
How is a collaborative divorce different?
Collaborate means to work together or cooperate. If you are considering a collaborative divorce, it means that you are willing to problem solve and negotiate. This is different than the traditional dissolution of marriage process that often requires litigation and each party tends to have a “need to win” attitude.
Collaborative divorce benefits
There are numerous benefits to taking advantage of Pennsylvania’s collaborative divorce laws. These include:
- Time saving
- Money saving
- Informal setting
- Open communication
How does a collaborative divorce work?
A collaborative divorce generally involves just four people: both spouses and their attorneys. Before everything gets going, you will want to talk things over with your own attorney in order to discuss what you want to get out of the divorce and what is negotiable. When ready, you will then schedule times to meet with your spouse and his or her legal counsel.
During these meetings, you and your spouse, with the assistance of legal counsel, will take the time to discuss acceptable divorce terms. Depending on the number of topics discussed, such as property division, custody matters, alimony and child support, this can take several sessions to complete or it can be done in just a couple. Every case will be different.
What happens if we cannot agree on divorce terms?
It is not uncommon to argue or disagree when going through a collaborative divorce. It happens, but many couples are able to work past any disagreements and come to agreeable terms. If this process does not work, both spouses may turn to traditional divorce, but their attorneys will be required to withdraw and new counsel will have to be obtained.
Don’t just get any family law attorney to help with your collaborative divorce
This alternative to traditional divorce can work for couples in Pennsylvania who are willing to openly and honestly communicate and negotiate. If a collaborative divorce is of interest to you, make sure to obtain legal counsel who has experience with this process.