Collaborative Divorce: Right for You?

If you know a family law attorney, or if you know someone who has gone through a divorce recently, you may have heard the phrase “collaborative divorce.”  Believe it or not, there is such a thing, and it’s gaining traction around the country. Here are some of the most common questions the attorneys at Ruppert & Schaefer, P.C., receive about collaborative divorce:

collaborative-divorce

  1. What does collaborative divorce entail? The short answer is that in a collaborative divorce, the parties and attorneys make a promise that they will not go to court; rather, they will work together with their attorneys (and sometimes other professionals such as therapists or financial advisors) in series of meetings to civilly resolve all the issues. The parties and attorneys sign a collaborative agreement which memorializes this pledge. If, for some reason, this is not possible, and one or both parties choose to go to court, the parties must find new attorneys to represent them.
  1. Who should consider collaborative divorce? There is no one right answer to this question; however, you might consider collaborative divorce if you desire some or all of the following:
  • to avoid court intervention;
  • to achieve a civil resolution;
  • to maintain an amicable relationship with your former spouse;
  • to amicably co-parent with your former spouse; and
  • maintain privacy, autonomy, and control in personal matters like those that arise in divorce.

The overall goal of collaborative divorce is to bring the parties and attorneys together so that creative, respectful, and collective problem solving can occur.

  1. Do I need an attorney who is trained to practice collaborative divorce?  To be able to represent a client in a collaborative law divorce, the attorney must have received training in the collaborative process.   A collaboratively trained attorney understands the goals of the collaborative-divorce process, knows how to work with other team members to effectuate those goals, and can make sure the client understands and feels comfortable with the process at each stage.

Attorneys Paula Schaefer and Lainie Hurwitz of Ruppert & Schaefer, P.C., are trained collaborative attorneys and are available to discuss this process with you at any time. Call us at (317) 580-9295; your future is our concern.