How does Collaborative Practice actually work?

When a couple decides to pursue a Collaborative Practice divorce, they each hire Collaborative lawyers. All of the parties agree in writing not to go to court. Then, each spouse meets privately with individual lawyers and in face-to-face discussions. Additional experts such as divorce coaches and child and financial specialists may join the process. Sometimes these professionals are the first person a party discusses divorce with, and they bring together the rest of the Collaborative Divorce team. These sessions with both spouses and all Collaborative Team members involved work toward an honest exchange of information and expression of needs and expectations. The well-being of any children receive priority attention. Children may be represented by the “child specialist,” a trained mental health professional who discusses the children’s interests. Mutual problem-solving by all the parties leads to the final divorce agreement. A similar process can get excellent results in other types of civil disputes beyond family law matters.