When they separate, or divorce, couples must find a way to resolve their differences on all relevant issues. Collaborative Practice is designed to minimize conflict while working toward that resolution. Parties to divorce, their attorneys and any other professional involved, agree to make a good faith attempt to reach a mutually acceptable settlement without going to court. Working together, they strive to dissolve the marriage in a way that addresses everyone’s legal, financial, and emotional needs.
There are three (3) broad areas of concern for most couples: (1) How will parenting decisions be made in the years to come? (2) How will the assets and liabilities accumulated during the marriage be divided? (3) What if any, are the continuing financial obligations between the soon to be former spouses and co-parents?
In the Collaborative Process, as opposed to attorney negotiated settlements or litigated court procedures, the problem solving takes a bottom-up approach; not a top-down model. The Collaborative Process is fact based and transparent. Attorneys provide representation that is geared towards advice, counsel and evaluation of options; consequences of each option, both positive and negative, are discussed in team settings. The need for strategic bargaining is lessened.
The Collaborative Process is a rational approach to a highly emotional situation. The emotions, however, are not ignored. Most Collaborative Law teams, in Cincinnati, include a neutral mental health professional to help clients understand and become aware of how emotions are so often in play and how they can affect process and decision making when spouses are reaching the end of a very intimate relationship; decisions not only about money and finances, but about the best interests of children whose parents have decided not to live together any longer.
As a listener of WXVU and NPR you are a curious and thinking individual. If your curiosity extends to the process of how best to end a relationship like no other, you owe it to yourself to find out if the Collaborative Process will be the right one for your situation.