Why collaboration is key to a stress-free separation
Separation and divorce is undoubtedly one of the most stressful situations we can face. That’s why we encourage couples to take a collaborative approach to managing their affairs.
What is collaboration?
Collaborative practice has been designed to offer a more respectful and less stressful approach to dealing with separation and divorce. It can help those involved to come to an agreement on financial and children arrangements, whilst also helping couples to maintain a positive relationship.
How does a collaborative divorce or separation work?
At the start of the process, you’ll sign an agreement that commits you to trying to resolve your issues without going to court. Then – with your collaboratively-trained lawyer providing advice and guidance throughout – you’ll have the opportunity to discuss your problems, face-to-face.
A collaborative approach also offers greater flexibility and creativity than a more traditional approach. This can be particularly helpful if you have joint business interests, or you want to come to a more flexible arrangement over child care.
So what can you expect if you choose a collaborative process for your divorce?
Firstly, you must both be in agreement that this is the approach you wish to take and be committed to maintaining honest and open communication throughout.
You’ll both be invited to share your own objectives, and these will be discussed at face-to-face meetings. Other professionals, such as financial planning experts, may also be involved at this stage.
A major benefit of collaborative law is that the process isn’t driven by a timetable imposed by the court. Sometimes only a couple of meetings are needed, but there’s flexibility to allow for more.
During the final meeting you’ll sign a document confirming the agreements you have reached. Your lawyers will put it into effect, obtaining a court order where needed on your behalf.
In some areas of family law, we offer clients a complimentary 30-minute meeting with a legal expert in family law, as well as fixed fees so you’ll know exactly how much you’ll pay from the start.
You can also download our family law guides or factsheets with useful information on a range of family issues.