For many people, a divorce is one of the hardest things they will ever have to go through. The process can be stressful and upsetting for a number of reasons. Not only is the disintegration of a relationship a difficult thing to process, parents may also be concerned about how it will affect their children. While a divorce is never easy, it might not have to be as difficult if couples examine all of their options. The majority of divorces go through litigation which involves each party hiring an attorney and preparing to go to court to resolve their issues. This process is expensive and time-consuming and also fosters a combative attitude between divorcing parties.
New York Magazine talks about an alternative to litigation for settling divorces known as collaborative divorce. This is a great option for families looking to minimize the negative effects of the divorce process. Collaborative divorce involves both parties and their attorneys who have been properly trained in the collaborative process working together to reach compromises through honest and open discussion. In addition to attorneys, financial advisers, parenting experts and other professionals may also be used to offer their advice and opinion. The purpose of a collaborative divorce is for couples to decide between them the best ways to settle their disputes. It encourages divorcing spouses to work together rather than against each other.
One of the biggest problems with litigation is that it encourages parties to fight each other. Often couples who are divorcing are already at odds with one another and the knowledge that they must compete against each other to get what they want in the divorce settlement will only make matters worse. Even before cases go to trial, couples often look out for their best interests only. The article in New York Magazine states the following:
This pretrial sparring often leaves the spouses even angrier than before the divorce was filed, which can have lasting negative results, particularly distressing when children are involved.
A combative attitude can be detrimental to divorcing couples in a number of ways. First of all, it can lead to a lot of stress during the process for both parties. When spouses feel that they must work against each other, one will essentially be the winner and the other the loser. This can be very stressful for everyone involved; feeling that they must win in order to get a divorce settlement that they are happy with. It could even bring out the worst in people when it comes to separating assets or issues of parental rights and responsibilities causing them to demand more in the divorce then they really need just so that they can deny the other party.
Contention during a divorce can also have a huge impact on children. Most divorcing parents are concerned about how their separation will affect their kids. Studies have shown that the more contentious a divorce between parents is, the more likely it is to have a negative and lasting effect on their children.
Finally, a divorce that is settled through litigation can lead to long lasting, negative emotions between spouses. After a litigious divorce, parties may be psychologically and emotionally scarred making it difficult for them to move on. Parents can face issues as well. When children are involved, couples still must maintain a relationship in order to co-parent. If a couple has gone through a contentious divorce, the relationship will likely be strained, making it difficult to resolve issues in the future. A bitter relationship between parents can also have a negative effect on the child as well.
As New York Magazine discusses, many people are looking towards collaborative divorce as a way of avoiding contention during the divorce process. Collaborative divorce allows parties to consult with attorneys and experts in order to reach a divorce agreement that is best for everyone. The divorce process does not always have to be combative. Couples should consider the option of working together to get results that they are both happy with.
In addition to a couple's relationships, litigation can also have a big impact on their wallet. Though estimates are hard to find, attorneys agree that collaborative divorce is a much less expensive option because it requires less work from attorneys. About 95% of all litigation divorces end up settling, meaning they never even go to trial. This leaves couples paying attorneys for pretrial preparations that they never even use. To find out more about the collaborative divorce process and how is can work for you, contact a New Hampshire family law attorney today.