Mediation and Collaborative Law Process
Not every dispute needs to end up in a difficult litigation process. Sometimes, the parties are willing to settle their differences in good faith but need professional legal help in doing so. In such circumstances there exist several alternatives. We refer to “divorce”, but most of the information below refers equally to separation, dissolution of civil union, or other family disputes.
Not every dispute needs to
end up in a difficult litigation
Collaborative law is a relatively new type of process where the parties can each be assisted by their attorneys who jointly engage financial specialists so as to settle the divorce or other family disputes in a non-confrontational, non-antagonistic manner. The lawyers and the parties will agree together on what third-party professionals to engage, and these will assist them in finding solutions to their impasses and resolving the dissolution of the couple.
Where both parties are willing to collaborate in good faith, mediation can be a viable and lower cost alternative to litigation. This process consists of sitting through multiple sessions with a mediator who helps the parties come to an acceptable compromise to their dispute. The benefits of mediation are that, when done in good faith, it can be much less costly and much quicker than a full litigation.
Aside from the collaborative law process and a formal mediation, there exist a few types of amicable divorces. Two common examples are uncontested divorces and joint divorces. Please note that this information below refers equally to separation, dissolution of civil union, or other family disputes.
An uncontested divorce is one of the least costly and quickest manners in which to obtain a divorce or separation. In an uncontested divorce, one party, the “plaintiff” or “applicant” initiates the proceedings. If the other party does not contest the demands, then a judgment will usually be granted. In the alternative, and even more preferable, the two parties can sign a “divorce agreement” indicating their agreement to all of the details stipulated.
A joint divorce or separation occurs where both parties file an application together, or are represented by the same lawyer who files the application for the two of them. This can only occur when both parties fully agree on every aspect of the divorce or separation. If there is any disagreement, then the application cannot be joint. If the parties start out hiring one attorney together, but then fall into disagreement, that attorney can then no longer represent either party against the other. To do so would be a conflict of interest.