When you’ve decided to get divorced, the thought of going through a costly and lengthy divorce process may seem overwhelming. Many couples are turning to collaborative divorce as a way to get divorced in a cost-effective, lower-stress process. In this divorce, spouses agree to voluntary ground rules and engage in a client-centered, interest-based negotiation model for resolving disputes.
Discuss Your Case With a New Bern Collaborative Divorce Attorney
Choosing to pursue a collaborative divorce typically reduces the stress and tension in a person’s life. At Greene Wilson Crow & Smith, our divorce attorneys will ensure that the process of separating your assets, debts, and livelihoods is as peaceful as possible, focusing on positive communication methods. If you are interested in learning more about collaborative divorce, contact Greene Wilson Crow & Smith today to schedule your initial consultation.
Why Is Traditional Divorce So Expensive?
When spouses cannot agree on the terms of their divorce, the divorce can become full of conflict, causing the divorce process to drag on longer than necessary. You may have heard friends and family discuss the long-lasting, negative financial implications of their divorce. Getting a divorce requires a couple to make important decisions about dividing their assets and debt, negotiating spousal support, and agreeing on child custody issues.
If you and your spouse can’t agree on the terms of your divorce, the process can be costly and stressful. Most divorce attorneys charge clients by the hour. The longer the conflict goes on, the more hours the attorneys will need to spend working on their clients’ divorces, and the higher the legal bills. Should the divorce proceed to litigation, the cost will increase dramatically. Preparing for litigation takes a significant amount of legal research and preparation.
The Collaborative Divorce Process in North Carolina
Collaborative divorce is an alternative to traditional divorce proceedings. The objective of this type of divorce is to facilitate a peaceful negotiation between the spouses, not to prepare for litigation in court. The couple seeking a divorce works together to come to a mutually agreed-upon decision regarding their divorce settlement. While the court does not get involved in assigning assets to one spouse or the other or determining child custody arrangements, the court will need to finalize the settlement agreement that the couple has agreed upon.
In this process, each spouse will have his or her own collaborative divorce attorney. Instead of acting as a litigation attorney, the attorney will act more as a mediator seeking to facilitate a peaceful negotiation between the spouses. However, an experienced collaborative divorce attorney will always consider the proposed agreement’s legal impact to make his or her client aware of red flags and address them.
Is Collaborative Divorce Right for You?
A couple should consider a collaborative divorce when they are seeking a divorce, or even when they’re considering a divorce or separation but haven’t come to a decision. The couple may want to determine what the consequences of divorce would look like before they begin petitioning the court for a divorce. During this stage, both spouses would hire their collaborative attorney. The attorneys would use their mediation and settlement skills to guide the couple into reaching a mutual agreement.
When considering whether collaborative divorce is right for you, you should consider how serious you and your spouse are about negotiating a divorce settlement out of court. Are both of you dedicated to the idea of peacefully negotiating a settlement? Are there some issues that you do not anticipate being able to agree upon out-of-court? In order for a collaborative divorce agreement to be valid in North Carolina, the agreement must be in writing, and each spouse must sign the agreement.
Finally, the agreement must include provisions that allow the withdrawal of the attorneys should the collaborative law procedure not be successful. The collaborative divorce process will be deemed unsuccessful if there is no settlement of all the disputed issues by the spouses. Suppose the spouses can agree on spousal support, property division, and debt division, but they cannot agree on a child custody plan. In that case, the collaborative divorce would be deemed unsuccessful. The attorneys would withdraw, and the spouses would need to hire different attorneys representing them as they move towards litigation.
Many benefits come with seeking this kind of divorce. Most couples who decide to go through a collaborative divorce experience reduced stress associated with traditional divorce proceedings. Both spouses will enjoy a sense of ownership over the divorce proceeding as they can set their terms during the mediation process.
Another critical benefit of seeking a collaborative divorce involves reduced costs. Traditional divorce is expensive, especially when you add up the court costs, attorney fees, and more. Many couples can reach an agreement more quickly outside of court through collaborative divorce, eliminating some of the costs associated with their divorce.
Couples who use this type of divorce also enjoy a better understanding of the terms of their divorce. As the spouses play a pivotal role in negotiating the terms of their divorce, they are better aware of the issues surrounding asset division, tax agreements, child support, and more. They will talk through each of these issues with their collaborative divorce attorney, get feedback from their spouse’s attorney, and understand the divorce settlement thoroughly before signing it.
Contact a New Bern Collaborative Divorce Attorney Today
The experienced collaborative divorce attorneys at Greene Wilson Crow & Smith will help you make knowledgeable decisions about financial issues. One of our skilled attorneys will guide you through the divorce process. We will try to establish the groundwork for the next chapter in your life. While representing your best interest, we will work with your spouse to have beneficial and productive conversations, working toward the goal of your divorce settlement. Contact Greene Wilson Crow & Smith today to schedule your initial consultation.