Depending upon the situation, there may be several different parties involved in a collaborative law divorce. Each individual’s participation in the collaborative session is geared towards helping the parties reach a fair agreement in an efficient and cost-effective manner.
Even though one of the main goals of collaborative law is to avoid going to court, the settlement the parties reach at the end of a collaborative session remains a binding legal agreement. Accordingly, it is important to have an experienced collaborative attorney to assist the parties on all matters of law, including spousal support, child support, and child custody, as well as financial settlements and property distribution. The couple and their collaborative attorneys commit to share necessary information to work towards an agreement that best represents the needs and desires of each party.
In Massachusetts, typically one neutral coach is used in a collaborative law divorce case. A divorce coach is a licensed mental health professional that brings specialized skills to the collaborative session. The divorce coach’s role is to help the parties prioritize their concerns and needs, deal with their feelings and differences in healthy ways, stay focused on their goals by neutralizing or minimizing destructive emotions, communicate effectively with each other, with their lawyers, and with their children, and provide them with tools for positive co-parenting going forward.
The guidance of a financial specialist in a collaborative law case will help protect each party’s financial interest. A financial specialist is someone with one or more financial certifications, who acts as a neutral expert in a collaborative law case. The financial specialist reviews each party’s assets and incomes, as well as debts and liabilities. A financial specialist will also analyze how different scenarios for property division, child support, and alimony would play out in the future. The financial specialist then assists the parties in analyzing and evaluating viable financial options for the parties’ futures.
A traditional divorce is especially difficult on children. This is partly due to the fact that children are not well equipped to understand or express their feelings, and communication with their parents during a divorce becomes difficult. In a collaborative practice, however, the welfare of any children takes top priority. A person skilled in understanding children’s wants and needs, known as a child specialist, will meet with children privately, helping them express their feelings and concerns about the divorce. The child specialist encourages children to think creatively about the future. The child specialist then relays the children’s feelings, concerns, and hopes to the collaborative team. By utilizing a child specialist, the team is better equipped to plan for the children’s lives after the agreement is finalized.
Contact an Experienced Massachusetts Collaborative Law Attorney
All parties involved in a collaborative law case share a common goal: to work with the parties in a results-focused environment, in order to reach an agreement without having to enter the traditional adversarial court system. If you or someone you know is interested in this results-oriented approach to resolving disputes, contact the Law Office of Martin Murphy or call (781) 285-8989 today.