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Collaborative Divorce and Mediation
We cannot change the fact that couples will divorce but Mediation and Collaborative Divorce can change the way people divorce.
Both Mediation and Collaborative Divorce help the parties move forward to a compassionate and respectful ending to their marriage. Most importantly these two alternative methods to divorce keep the emphasis on the children as a priority. The parties are assisted throughout the Mediation and Collaborative process in developing communication skills related to the children. It is very important that the parties develop a means by which they can communicate so both parties remain in their children’s lives forever and later their grandchildren’s lives. In both Mediation and Collaborative Divorce the parties come to an agreement out of Court, thus saving on the amount of attorney’s fees they would have to pay in a litigated divorce.
In Mediation, both client’s meet with a divorce attorney who serves as a neutral Mediator to assist the couple in arriving at a full-settlement related to support, equitable distribution of assets acquired during the marriage and custody and timesharing, if applicable.
In Collaborative Divorce each party has an attorney by their side to assist the parties in creative problem solving to reach an agreement on all issues related to the dissolution of the marriage. If one spouse is concerned about expressing their feelings with their spouse present in a meeting with a mediator or there is an imbalance of power, the collaborative process may be better suited for that individual.
In a Collaborative Divorce the parties and their attorneys sometimes ask another collaborative professional to assist the parties as well. A Mental Health Professional may help the parties with a parenting plan or communication related to the children. A Financial Professional (usually an accountant or a certified financial planner) may assist with a budgeting plan, the valuation of a business or support calculations.
In both Mediation and Collaborative Divorce the communications (things you say, documents you produce and offers you make) generally cannot be used in Court or any other legal procedure. This means that the communications remain private and do not become part of a Court file like they would in a litigated case.
Both Mediation and Collaborative Divorce cases usually resolve in a much quicker time frame avoiding the emotional stress caused to the children and the parties as a result of the parties being involved in a protracted litigated divorce. Both Collaborative Divorce and Mediation save time and money and allow the parties and their children to begin the process of moving forward with their lives.
To file for divorce in New Jersey under no-fault grounds, the couple must have been living separate and apart in different residences for at least 18 consecutive months. There must be no hope of reconciliation in the marriage.
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