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An insider's view of collaborative law

It may seem like the words "divorce" and "collaboration" do not belong in the same sentence, and for good reason. When couples decide to end their marriages, the aftermath is not always pretty and, in fact, the whole process can be downright nasty. Ohio couples can choose a different route, though. They do not have to play the blame game and throw one another under the proverbial bus when they go to court. 

Collaborative law is a relatively new approach to matters that once required an appearance before a judge. The American Bar Association points out that court costs, in terms of emotions and finances, are often expensive. Collaborative practice can help clients save both. 

Provisions of collaborative law 

The ABA explains the main provisions of collaborative law:

  • Each spouse has an attorney.
  • Both spouses and both attorneys agree to "open communication and full disclosure."
  • All agree that if a party decides to go to court anyway, they will both have to retain different lawyers.

According to the ABA, what makes the collaboration unique - in addition to the above elements - is how the attorneys "guide the process by facilitating the face-to-face meetings, helping to prioritize interests and concerns, and gathering the necessary documents."

Benefits of the collaborative process

Why is this process beneficial? The ABA points out that it is forward-focused, with every party looking ahead, beyond disputes of the past. It also opens the door for creativity in solving disputes that come up and goes a long way toward preserving relationships. 

FindLaw adds cost savings, informality and honest exchange as additional advantages of collaborative law. 

 

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