Divorce can be one of the most challenging experiences a person goes through. It can affect just about every aspect of a person’s life, from social and familial connections to finances and living situations. It may also involve difficult, painful emotions.
It makes sense, then, when people want to pursue legal options that make the process easier. One option that can do this is collaborative divorce. Following are some indications that a collaborative divorce could be a good option for you.
- Both parties can commit to the process-It is imperative that both parties commit to the collaborative process. In fact, all participants must agree to keep the case out of court for a collaborative case to proceed.
- Flexibility is a priority-A litigated divorce is more rigid than a collaborative divorce. Through the collaborative process, divorcing spouses work together (and with their respective attorneys) to negotiate resolutions that best fit their situation. While the results must be lawful and approved by a court, parties have more control over issues like spousal support, property division and child custody.
- You can communicate with each other-You do not need to agree on everything or even be friendly with each other for collaboration to work. However, parties must be willing and able to communicate and reach decisions cooperatively. If one person is hostile or non-communicative, the process is less likely to be successful.
- You are amicable, but need help making decisions-You might have complex assets or a tricky custody situation to consider. This can make other alternatives to litigation, like mediation, unrealistic if you need a more formal setting and assistance with difficult issues. Even if you get along with each other, the collaborative process in Massachusetts involves professionals suited to providing guidance in complicated situations.
- You want to avoid the cost of litigation-Divorce costs money and going to court for a divorce is often the most expensive option. Staying out of court can cost less than litigation, which could be enough of a motivator for otherwise uncooperative parties to commit to collaboration.
If your situation and expectations align with those on this list, a collaborative divorce could be successful in your case. For specific guidance and recommendations, however, it can be wise to consult an attorney.