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What is Collaborative Divorce?

Collaborative Divorce is a reasonably-priced dispute resolution process established by North Carolina law for settling divorce and family law disputes outside of court.  Learn more about Collaborative Divorce.

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What Is Collaborative Divorce/Collaborative Practice?

Collaborative Divorce is a reasonably-priced dispute resolution process established by North Carolina law for settling divorce and family law disputes outside of court.  The philosophy guiding Collaborative Divorce acknowledges that there are multiple components to divorce – legal, emotional and financial – and appreciates that often the emotional and financial needs of clients are neglected in the traditional adversarial divorce model.  To better meet all the needs of clients, the Collaborative Divorce process employs a client-selected team of legal professionals, mental health professionals and financial professionals working together to assist clients in reaching a mutually acceptable settlement. 

Several core elements govern the Collaborative Divorce process:

  • An agreement to negotiate a mutually acceptable agreement without going to court to resolve disputes.
  • Honest, open, full, voluntary and good faith communication and exchange of information.
  • The goal of finding creative resolutions to disputes which take into account the interests of all parties.
  • Disqualification of all team professionals involved in the collaborative process from participation in any litigation proceedings between the clients.

How Does the Collaborative Process Work?

The Collaborative Divorce process proceeds in a series of conferences between the team professionals and the clients.  Once the parties have each retained a collaborative attorney, the parties identify what other team members may be appropriate for their situation and budget.  Other than legal professionals, the potential team members include a financial professional, a child specialist, a co-parenting advisor, and divorce coach(es).  After the team is identified, the clients and team work together to gather information, identify the parties’ needs and interests, brainstorm creative resolutions, evaluate and determine resolutions, and memorialize the parties’ agreement in a written agreement.