Collaborative Law: Alternative to Divorce

Collaborative meeting

What do Cameron Crowe, Madonna, and Robin Williams have in common? They have all participated in collaborative law as an alternative to litigated divorce. During his 2008 divorce, Robin Williams stated: “We will strive to be honest, cooperative and respectful as we work in this process to achieve the future well-being of our families.”

Collaborative law is a process where the parties work together with a team of professionals including two collaborative trained attorneys to resolve all issues of a divorce. Both parties and professionals sign a contract that states:

  1. Parties and team will negotiate terms of the divorce in meetings;
  2. All parties and team will be completely transparent regarding discovery and any matters involving the family and process of being married to being divorced; AND
  3. Parties will make every effort to avoid filing a litigated divorce, but if necessary, the team (including parties’ individual attorneys) will be conflicted out of representation or testimony in the litigated divorce.

Many celebrities like collaborative law because the process is more private than litigated divorce in which all filings are public record. There are many other benefits as well including: parties maintain more control over divorce negotiations; children are left out of the proceedings; more cost effective; more efficient timeline; AND setting a positive tone for the family’s future as the family transitions from being married to being divorced.

Collaborative law is a wonderful alternative to litigated divorce that should be considered. However, not every process is best for everyone, so reach out to Smith & Smith Law Office to see if collaborative law is right for your family.