Collaborative law is when a couple makes an agreement with their attorney to process their divorce outside a court room. All parties must agree that if they cannot settle their divorce issues and one party decides to go before a judge, the attorneys must withdraw from the case.
The couple signs a ‘Participation Agreement’ which states they will let their lawyers reach an agreement for them. The agreement requires the couple to keep all communications open with each other. The couple and their attorneys will participate in a group meeting so they can each express their feelings and thoughts openly. In addition, if a settlement is not reached, their current attorneys will withdraw and not participate any further.
Using collaborative law is less expensive for the couple and takes less time than a court-room process. However, if the process fails, there is an extra cost involved with starting over with a new attorney.
Ending a marriage is not easy, especially when emotions run high. If you are considering a divorce and want to learn more about collaborative law, contact an Orange County Family Law attorney who will go over the steps with you in a language you can understand.