How to Have a Collaborative Divorce in WashingtonCollaborative divorce is a process designed to make divorce less combative and costly. Spouses that can temporarily put aside their differences and work together can reduce the length and difficulty of their divorce, as well as limit costs and emotional distress. So, if you want your divorce to proceed as quickly and smoothly as possible, with limited intervention from a court, collaborative divorce may be right for you.

Things to know about collaborative divorce

Collaborative divorce is not simply a modified version of the traditional divorce process. Instead, it has its own sets of procedures and requirements, as well as trained professionals who specialize in collaborative divorce.

When considering collaborative divorce, you should understand how it works and how it differs from traditional divorce.

Selecting your divorce team is an important first step

A collaborative divorce process is only as effective as the team running it. You need to select experienced collaborative attorneys who can help guide you through the details of the process, and, more importantly, can help you smooth out differences and focus on the task at hand. Each party must have their own attorney, and they will not be the same attorneys you use if you ever do need to go to court.

Just as important as the attorneys are the supporting professionals. Financial experts, mental health professionals and child welfare professionals often facilitate speedy conclusion to a collaborative divorce. While outside professionals can raise the costs of collaborative divorce compared to other alternative dispute resolution options, such as mediation, the benefits typically outweigh the costs.

Freely disclosing information helps keep it private

In a collaborative divorce, you must agree to be open and cooperate, particularly when it comes to providing information needed to develop plans for division of assets and child custody. But parties who freely disclose necessary information reap an important benefit: information about your relationship, your finances, and other issues you wish to remain private stay out of court. By collaborating, you are in the best position to preserve your privacy.

You keep decision-making power rather than the court

Collaborative divorce keeps the proceedings out of court until the time comes for the judge to sign off on your agreements. Not only does this minimize disruption of your and your spouse’s lives and emotional health, it also keeps the court from making any decisions for you.

You never have to work around the court’s schedule, so your process will invariably be faster. Most importantly, however, once you agree on a settlement, there is no trial and the court will not modify or reject the settlement. You retain control throughout.

Collaborative divorce can be an effective and minimally intrusive alternative to help you through your divorce. At the Law Offices of Molly B. Kenny, our divorce lawyers in Bellevue, Washington, understand that ending a relationship is difficult enough, without adding difficulties during the divorce. To learn more about how we can help, call us today, or use our online contact form to send an email.

Molly B. Kenny
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Divorce and Child Custody Attorney Serving Bellevue and Seattle Washington
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