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Collaborative Divorce in Dilworth

Whether or not you are going through a divorce, considering divorce, or just separated from your spouse, you have likely heard the term “collaborative divorce”. Collaborative divorce is an alternative to litigation, arbitration, and mediation for couples that are separating and seeking a divorce decree. Studies show that a majority of divorces are settled out of court, making collaborative divorce a viable option for many couples in Dilworth. If you or someone you know is facing divorce contact a skilled North Carolina family law attorney to learn more about collaborative divorce in your area.

Understanding Collaborative Divorce

Collaborative divorce is a voluntary process. During this process, couples work toward reaching a divorce settlement that includes fair and equitable terms, with the assistance of their respective divorce attorneys as well as expert consultants. The main purpose of collaborative divorce is to save the parties involved from the financial and emotional cost that often comes with litigation in court. Through the process of collaborative divorce, the couple is able to choose to resolve all issues surrounding the divorce in a mutually beneficial way outside the courthouse. In fact, collaborative divorce is advantageous as it empowers both parties: It allows them to decide the terms of the agreement and customize the divorce settlement based on their particular interests and needs.

Collaborative divorce in Dilworth has many parties involved. The collaborative team consists of the client and collaboratively trained family law attorney, neutral financial professional, and a mental health professional. The focus of the team is to help the couple complete their divorce in a way that is efficient, expeditious, inexpensive, and respectable.

Specially Trained Lawyers

Of note, the collaborative divorce process requires that both lawyers involved - yours and your spouse’s - are specifically trained in collaborative divorce. North Carolina family law attorneys must be specifically trained in collaborative negotiation skills in order to handle a collaborative divorce case. North Carolina even has a collaborative law group with member-attorneys. While there may be many North Carolina attorneys that are trained in collaborative divorce, be sure to choose one who has the experience, knowledge, characteristics, and personality that suits you.

Encouraging Amicable Resolutions

Because collaborative lawyers in North Carolina are trained and skilled in collaborative law, they are able to create a negotiating environment that encourages peaceful solutions to the matters at hand. While not the same as arbitration, collaborative law mandates that all parties sign an agreement prior to engaging in the process. This document requires that all parties, including the spouses’ respective legal counsel, agree to the following:

  • To resolve the issues regarding the divorce without court intervention;
  • To communicate honestly all financial matters and relevant facts to the other side; and
  • To disqualify the respective attorneys from continued representation in the event the matter is unable to be resolved collaboratively.

While the first and third is not so difficult to follow, the second one can be more complicated. For this reason, it is critical for couples who may be interested in the collaborative divorce process to understand that they are completely trusting their spouse to be transparent, upfront, and honest during negotiations. Keep in mind that the attorneys have a limited ability to ensure his or her client is being completely honest. In order to succeed in the collaborative divorce process the couple must feel confident that his or her spouse will commit and come to the negotiation table with complete honesty and transparency seeking a fair and open resolution.

The Goals of Collaborative Divorce

Because one of the main goals in a collaborative divorce is showing mutual respect during the process, this approach to divorce is often less stressful for all involved. In fact, collaborative divorce helps to build rapport between the couple instead of bitterness that is a common side-effect when litigating a divorce. Simply put, collaborative divorce gives the couple all of the benefits of legal representation without the potential negative aspects of combative litigation or binary resolution arbitration.

Similar to arbitration and mediation, collaborative law tries to establish and maintain a civil and respectable relationship between the parties involved in the legal matter. This environment is expected to be maintained not only throughout the negotiation process, but well after an agreement is reached.

Dilworth Family Law Help

The North Carolina family law attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC have experience in the collaborative divorce process in Dilworth and the areas surrounding Charlotte and can help you. Contact us today for a consultation to learn more about collaborative divorce and how it can help you.