Fort Worth Collaborative Divorce Attorneys
A collaborative divorce can be the best route to take for former spouses whose points of view on issues pertaining to divorce—such as child custody, visitation rights, and asset division—are neither in complete accord nor high conflict. While the relationship of divorcing couples can be characterized by anything from utmost civility to adversarial strife, many couples fall in the middle of the spectrum. Some former couples simply need help and advice in coming to a decision that would benefit both parties. Rather than having decisions finalized by an objective third party, couples in a collaborative divorce can openly discuss and negotiate their issues with the assistance of two appointed attorneys. The process allows couples to reach stable end negotiations without having to take the case to trial.
Collaborative divorces are a great way to save time, money, and animosity during the dissolution of a marriage. Furthermore, it is always a good idea for you and your former spouse to have the representation of legal counsel—this ensures that an attorney well-versed in the nuances of divorce law will be able to represent your interests fairly, accurately, and within the confines of the law. At The Maynard Law Firm, PLLC, our proficient Fort Worth collaborative divorce lawyers can help you reach an appropriate settlement that appeases both parties without the hassle and expenses of a court trial.
Advantages of a Collaborative Divorce
In a collaborative divorce, you and your former spouse will be able to settle your differences and finalize your divorce with the help of professionals, such as accountants and child custody specialists if necessary. You will meet with your own collaborative divorce attorney, while having regular meetings with your former spouse and their attorney. The four of you will work together to settle your divorce without resorting to litigation. Some benefits of a collaborative divorce over other divorce models include:
- Ability to determine how to handle future post-divorce negotiations
- Ability to voluntarily exchange all information
- Ability to settle negotiations without feeling duped or wronged
- Ability to navigate through the divorce in agreed-upon ways that minimize expenses and speed up the process
Additionally, a collaborative divorce allows you to obtain information without prying, sneaking around, or resorting to other under-handed tactics. An important part of ending a marriage is feeling like your voice has been heard in the midst of negotiations; in this way, a collaborative divorce provides a high likelihood of walking away with respect and your dignity intact. However, it is worth noting that if a settlement is not reached during collaborative divorce proceedings, the case will likely go to court.
How The Maynard Law Firm, PLLC Can Help
Our attorneys are ready to help you if you are interested in pursuing a collaborative divorce. We can help you with:
- Constructing a settlement agreement
- Child custody agreement
- Financial/accounting agreements
Collaborative divorces require participation and cooperation on the part of the divorcing spouses. Our attorneys will help you and can bring in experts as needed to help with the necessary agreements.
Frequently Asked Questions about Collaborative Divorce
While many people are familiar with the concept of traditional divorce, we understand that you may not be as familiar with collaborative divorce. That’s why we have provided the answers to the following frequently asked questions to help you better understand how this type of divorce works. If you have specific questions or if you think that a collaborative divorce might be the right choice for you, contact us at (817) 335-9600 today.
Why should I choose The Maynard Law Firm, PLLC to handle my case?
Our attorneys at The Maynard Law Firm, PLLC have years of experience handling divorce cases in Texas and our main mission to protect your family. We know that going through a divorce can be stressful for you, but we strive to ensure that all of your needs are met through the process.
If you are going through a divorce, you need an experienced professional by your side to fight for what you deserve. We have the experience, skills, and resources to help you protect what is most valuable to you.
What are the benefits of collaborative divorce?
Choosing to pursue a collaborative divorce has a number of advantages that can benefit both parties involved. When going through a divorce, it is important to feel that your voice and needs have been heard. Collaborative divorce ensures that both parties are getting what they want without having to take the case to court. You are in control of the outcome of your case instead of a judge deciding what is best for your family. By encouraging cooperation and communication, a collaborative divorce is also typically less expensive and quicker than taking your case to trial. All matters pertaining to your divorce remain private between both parties. Divorce can often result in years of animosity and resentment towards your former spouse, but a collaborative divorce is designed to accommodate both parties while fostering mutual respect for one another’s wants and needs.
How long will the collaborative divorce process take?
Each collaborative divorce case is different and the length will depend on the cooperation from both parties and the complexity of the issues involved in the divorce. Collaborative divorce is designed to be resolved with as little difficulty as possible with excellent cooperation between both parties. If both parties provide necessary documentation, attend meetings with lawyers and other professionals, the faster the case will resolve. Collaborative divorce can typically take around one year to resolve with only 3% of cases taking more than 2 years to resolve, which is still much faster than if you were to take your court to trial.
Is collaborative divorce better for my child?
The Texas Department of State Health Services reports that divorce affected the lives of 62,196 children under the age of 18 in 2012. Collaborative divorce is very beneficial for a couple with children. Collaborative divorce protects your case and consequently, your children from being a matter of public record in the courthouse. Both parties work privately together with lawyers and both parties can dictate what is made public if any information at all.
Collaborative divorce process encourages parties to develop a co-parenting plan that benefits everyone post-divorce. Parties also have the option to hire other professionals such as a child custody specialist to weigh in on the collaborative divorce process to assist in developing a neutral plan that benefits everyone.
When might collaborative divorce be a bad option for me?
While collaborative divorce is a great option for cooperative parties seeking to resolve their divorce with as little stress as possible, there are cases in which collaborative divorce is not a good idea. Instances in which collaborative divorce is not a good option include the following:
- Domestic abuse – If you have been abused by your partner, we understand that it may be impossible to ever trust them again. We believe that it may hard to have a productive and respectful conversation between parties who have experienced domestic abuse in the relationship. It is likely that a party may feel intimidated and as a result are less likely to speak up for what they really want out of the divorce.
- Financial inequality – If one party is in control of all the money, then it may create a sense of powerlessness and insecurity for the other party. This is not a good foundation for collaborative divorce. It is important that neither party feels intimated or insecure while discussing terms of the divorce because this can really hinder the results of the divorce.
- Mental health or addiction problems – If one or more parties have issues with mental health or addiction, finding the common ground needed in a collaborative divorce can be very difficult. People who suffer from addiction and mental health issues can cause the process to move very slowly due to the effects the issues can have on your life. Collaborative divorce is all about agreeing and working together towards a common goal that benefits both parties and those who suffer from addiction and mental health issues often have a harder time committing and abiding by agreements.
What other specialists could be hired in the collaborative divorce process?
Hiring other professionals who specialize in certain aspects of finance, child custody, and accounting can prove to be very beneficial to those who are working through a collaborative divorce. Experts can be hired and shared jointly by both parties and can be summoned when needed during the process. Professionals most often hired in collaborative divorces include financial professionals, mental health experts, and child custody specialists.
Collaborative Divorce Statistics
In Texas, the divorce rate has experienced a steady decline since 1992. According to the Texas Department of State Health Services, the divorce rate for Texas in 2012 was 3.1 per 1,000 total residents. Although the divorce rate is steadily decreasing, there are still a large number of divorces (80,030 divorces in 2012) in Texas that deserve to be settled with the utmost professionalism, simplicity, and at a financial rate for both parties.
The International Academy of Collaborative Professionals (IACP) completed a survey in 2010 in order to obtain basic feedback on the collaborative divorce process. The findings of the results speak for themselves regarding the success and benefits of a collaborative divorce. Key findings from this research include:
- 86 percent of cases settle within the Collaborative process
- The majority of cases (58 percent) resolve within 8 months or less
- 21% of cases were resolved in 9-12 months
For couples who find a collaborative divorce to be the appropriate approach to dissolving their marriage, this method can save significant time over a more embattled divorce.
Contact a Collaborative Divorce Lawyer
Divorce can be a frustrating and overwhelming experience, but with the help of the right legal counsel, the process can reach a quick and efficient end. The dedicated divorce lawyers at The Maynard Law Firm, PLLC are ready to help you and your former spouse go through your divorce proceeding as painlessly as possible and are devoted to protecting your interests. If you are ending your marriage and feel a collaborative divorce would best suit your situation, don’t hesitate to contact our Fort Worth offices at (817) 335-9600.