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How much do you know about alternatives to traditional divorce? - II

In a previous post, we began exploring how couples who make the difficult decision to end their marriage will be confronted with a host of important questions right out of the gate, including the exceedingly important inquiry of how exactly they want their divorce to proceed.

Specifically, we discussed how those looking to save time, money and energy, spare their children from unnecessary trauma and preserve their family-run business may want to consider collaborative divorce.

To recap, collaborative divorce involves the two spouses and their specially trained attorneys coming together outside of the courtroom to reach mutually acceptable solutions in an otherwise collegial atmosphere.

What are some of the advantages of collaborative divorce?

Outside of those mentioned above -- saving resources, easier on children, etc. -- some additional advantages of the collaborative divorce process include its confidentiality and transparency. Specifically, couples freely exchange information and records in the understanding that anything disclosed, including any associated negotiations or discussions, will remain private. This reality encourages a frank and open dialogue among all parties.

In addition, the non-confrontational nature of collaborative divorce can help ensure that divorcing couples remain on relatively good terms or, at the very least, are capable of being civil to one another. This is especially important if the couple has children or could potentially stay in business together.

Finally, even though the process is voluntary, all parties to the proceeding have a vested interest in seeing things resolved. This includes the two attorneys, as the agreement they sign at the outset of the proceedings dictates that they cannot represent their client in any ensuing litigation should the collaborative divorce process break down.

Why is collaborative divorce beneficial for family-owned businesses?

The confidential nature of collaborative divorce ensures that business records from any operation the spouses ran together will be kept confidential and, perhaps more significantly, that any disruption to their business operations will be minimal.

Furthermore, the retaining of a neutral financial professional to examine the business cuts costs and provides the spouses with the objective information they need to reach mutually acceptable solutions, such as whether to stay in business together or for one spouse to buy out the other.

How successful is collaborative divorce?

Statistics show on both a national level -- and right here in Florida -- that over 80 percent of spouses who initiate collaborative divorce proceedings will see them all the way through to completion.

Did state lawmakers recently codify the collaborative divorce process?

The Collaborative Law Process Act was signed by Governor Rick Scott back on March 24. Otherwise known as House Bill 967, it officially recognizes collaborative divorce as an alternative to divorce litigation.

Consider speaking with an experienced legal professional if you have questions relating to either collaborative divorce or traditional divorce, and would like to learn more. 

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Frank Family Law Practice
815 Orienta Avenue
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