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What is collaborative divorce, and how does it work?

On Behalf of | Feb 17, 2023 | Divorce |

Married couples in Washington who decide to get divorced have options. If they prefer to avoid traditional proceedings in court, collaborative divorce is one of them. This is how it works and when it’s the best option for you.

Collaborative divorce explained

Collaborative divorce is a way for a couple to end their marriage while negotiating all the matters most concerning to them. It requires spouses to work together while compromising to reach a satisfactory conclusion to issues such as alimony, property division, child custody and child support.

While collaborative divorce shares some similarities to divorce mediation, it differs in some ways. Each party meets separately with their respective attorneys to discuss what they want from the divorce. A collaborative divorce team that can include financial experts and child behavioral specialists may be assembled to help the process along.

Later, all parties meet together to discuss their concerns. They also sign an agreement that states they won’t go to court; however, if the collaborative divorce process fails to satisfy both spouses, their attorneys withdraw from the case, they have new representation and then can go to court where a judge decides how the case is settled.

Knowing whether collaborative divorce is right for you

Collaborative divorce is appropriate for couples who are willing to negotiate and work together to settle matters. Some people may find that it’s not right for them; for example, those who cannot communicate rationally without arguing or couples with a history of abuse could not benefit from the collaborative divorce process.

Unlike traditional court divorces, collaborative divorce is usually cheaper and allows you to finalize things more expeditiously.