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Parties often involved in a collaborative divorce

You and your spouse do not have to part on good terms to agree that neither of you wants to go to court for your divorce. While that means you have to work together, it does not mean you have to hammer out the details without help.

According to a study reported by the American Bar Association, mental health professionals, financial professionals and specially trained attorneys are often part of a collaborative divorce.

Mental health professionals

A collaborative divorce coach is a mental health professional who teaches you how to manage your emotions and communicate effectively with your ex. This typically involves helping you define your goals and boundaries, teaching you skills for solving problems as they arise and facilitating negotiations between you, your spouse and your attorneys. He or she may help create the co-parenting plan and advocate for the best interests of your child when conflicts arise between you and the other parent.

Financial professionals

The more assets you have, the easier it becomes to focus on the larger items and accounts and miss important details. For example, while you will need to include the value of your vacation home in the financial statement, you also need to get a valuation of your favorite painting or antique. Retirement accounts, stocks and bonds may change in value from one day to the next. Hiring a forensic accountant and valuation expert to identify and place a price tag on all your assets is key to a fair property division settlement.

Collaborative divorce attorneys

Not every family law attorney practices collaborative law. In fact, many have undergone special training, received certifications and joined groups such as the International Association of Collaborative Professionals. A lawyer with such knowledge, skills and resources at hand is much more likely to be able to reach a successful resolution and avoid the need to take your case to court.

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