Does every divorce in Colorado have to be a high-conflict courtroom show-down? Not necessarily. Through the process of collaborative law, it is possible for spouses to work together and settle their divorce in a less adversarial manner.
In a collaborative law divorce, each spouse retains their own lawyer, preferably one experienced in mediation and negotiation. Each spouse will have a private meeting with their lawyer. At this meeting, the spouse will talk to the lawyer about what they hope to accomplish and areas in which they would be willing to compromise. Meetings like this help the negotiation process run more smoothly, as there is an understanding about what the spouse is willing to accept.
Following that the spouses and their lawyers will meet, sometimes more than once. Other professionals may also be involved in the collaborative law divorce process, such as financial specialists, mediators, and counselors. However, these professionals should be neutral.
Also, each spouse and their lawyers will execute a "no court" agreement. Per this agreement, should the collaborative law process fail and the divorce must be litigated, the lawyers will bow out of the case and the spouses will have to hire new lawyers? Through agreements like these, all parties commit to doing their best to make the process work.
Collaborative law can be a good way for a couple to settle a divorce. Oftentimes it is not as expensive, time-consuming, and stressful as it would be if the divorce was litigated. And, in the end, it allows the spouses to retain control over the outcome, which can be more satisfactory for all involved.
Source: FindLaw, "How Collaborative Divorce Works: FAQs," Accessed Aug. 10, 2017
Tags: Collaborative Law
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