The core of the Collaborative Divorce Team includes the divorcing couple and their respective collaboratively-trained attorneys. Lawyers must complete a special training which differs dramatically from the traditional adversarial training provided in law schools. Rather than advocating for our clients from an adversarial and combative stance, lawyers help clients identify their underlying goals and interests. Trained Collaborative lawyers are able to facilitate and encourage a more solution-oriented, fact-specific, and interest-based negotiation process between the clients by following the Collaborative training.
Depending on the issues to be resolved, the team might also include a Child Specialist, one or more Divorce Coaches, and a Financial Specialist. In more unusual cases, parties may bring in a neutral attorney for a specialized area of law, such as Special Education Law, Social Security Disability, or Business Law. The team may also use other specialists to advise on matters of immigration, intellectual property, government benefits laws, and other more unusual matters. The team decides which services will provide the most value, given each family’s needs and budget.
The professionals are cognizant of the potential cost associated with a large team. For that reason, good communication between professionals is important to identify which professional is responsible for each issue. Full team meetings are rarely necessary, but instead the divorcing couple may choose to meet separately with a Coach or Child Specialist without lawyers to keep costs down.
For more information about the Collaborative Divorce team, contact one of our Collaboratively trained lawyers today.
by Jill Brittle