When you’re working out a divorce, it can feel as though there are no pathways to do so calmly and without getting the court involved. Thankfully, collaborative divorce options allow you and your former partner to amicably come to agreements. Here are the top six advantages of collaborative divorce in Illinois that will let you and your former spouse take care of things reasonably.
One of the most significant advantages of a collaborative divorce is that there’s minimal involvement from the court, so your discussions and arbitrations can remain more private. As in a traditional divorce, you and your former partner will still communicate with your respective attorneys. The main difference is that instead of going to court at the end of deliberations, you and your former spouse can make decisions for yourselves. Staying out of court can speed up deliberations, as you won’t need to wait for a judge to deliberate.
You can also keep your agreements away from the public eye this way. People don’t want their grievances aired out in public, and this discreet process allows couples to achieve that.
Another great advantage the collaborative divorce process has over the traditional approach is that it’s cheaper. A divorce involves a lot of litigation, and you want to spend as little time in the courtroom as possible. The longer it takes for you and your former partner to come to agreements—or for a judge to make the decisions for you—the more money you’ll have to spend, as you’ll need to pay your attorneys during this process. If you and your former spouse can’t collaborate and problem-solve together, each visit to the courtroom to untangle and arbitrate both of your wishes will be another headache. Furthermore, the longer the process takes, the more time you’ll have to spend away from your job. You’ll need to take time off, pay for childcare, and spend time driving to and from court. It all adds up.
The collaborative divorce process also helps you and your former spouse figure out your finances. Going to court can create resentment; instead of cooperating and figuring out what’s best for both parties, you and your former spouse may turn vindictive. In a collaborative divorce, however, you and your ex both understand that you want what’s best for one another. If you go about divorce this way, you can split up financial responsibilities reasonably.
Another great advantage of a collaborative divorce over traditional litigation is that the former will be easier for your children. The greatest challenge that many people face when going through divorces is not knowing how the separation will affect their children’s lives. You must navigate questions such as who your children will live with, who will make medical decisions for them, and who will be responsible for supporting them financially. A court can complicate these questions further. But if you and your ex can work together as problem-solvers, the whole divorce will affect your children as little as possible. Collaborative divorce provides the framework for this problem-solving away from a courtroom setting, where the process may feel more like an argument.
Another significant benefit is that your children won’t have to witness as much of the process. In traditional litigation, children are somewhat privy to what’s going on, as both of their parents will need to go to court. The children may even need to go to court themselves. Going through the collaborative divorce process shows your children that they still have two responsible parents who know how to work together.
In a traditional divorce, you and your ex-spouse would each have an attorney to represent you throughout the legal proceedings, so you may think this isn’t the case in a collaborative divorce. On the contrary, both you and your former spouse will still retain lawyers to advocate for your interests and to guide you through the process. Everyone will work together to ensure that everything and everyone is taken care of as best as possible.
You might be wondering if a collaborative divorce is the same as mediation. In a mediation, a third party facilitates the negotiations, but overall, they’re still just that: an intermediary between you and your ex-spouse. Alternatively, in a collaborative divorce, each spouse has someone representing them and advocating on their behalf. Your interests have a seat at the table, and if you ever feel like things are working out poorly, you and your attorney can opt for alternatives.
As we mentioned previously, traditional litigation is a time-intensive process. You must devote a lot of your own time to the process, and then you must also wait for the courts. Requesting and filing information and documents takes a lot of time for the different parties, and your divorce may not be finalized for months. When you’re trying to end your marriage and start fresh, this can be agonizing, as you likely just want to be done with the whole thing. This is part of why collaborative divorces are such great alternatives.
The most significant advantage of a collaborative divorce is the overall transparency between all parties. Though not everyone may be advocating for the same thing, everyone is playing for the same team. Because of this, there’s clear communication and a flow of information between everyone involved. This is a complicated process, but if you and your former partner both feel as though you can get through it healthily, a collaborative divorce should be your preferred option over traditional litigation. A collaborative divorce is a great option if you and your ex-spouse can work together and untangle the complications of the separation.
To take full advantage of these top six advantages of a collaborative divorce in Illinois, you and your ex will both need representatives. SDF Law can ensure that everything goes smoothly and results in the best outcome for you, your former spouse, and your children.