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What is the difference between mediated and collaborative divorce?

If you and your spouse have decided to divorce, you may have deep concerns about how the legal process of separation will impact your children, your relationship with your future ex and your own emotional and financial health.

However, if you and your spouse want to avoid a court trial and minimize conflict going forward, it is important to know that divorce litigation is not your only option. Both mediation and collaboration offer alternatives to a court hearing that may help you find creative ways to resolve differences and truly move forward.

What is divorce mediation?

Divorce mediation generally involves a series of confidential discussion sessions between you, your spouse and a neutral mediator. Rather than make decisions for you, the mediator acts as a guide helping you both to identify the issues you need to resolve, communicate your separate concerns and explore your potential options.

How is the collaborative divorce process different?

As in a mediated divorce, during a collaborative divorce, you and your spouse both agree to an open, cooperative process. However, while a neutral mediator typically presides over mediation, during collaboration you may each employ separate legal representatives who may be able to help you understand how to approach custody, property division, support and other agreements throughout the process.

Both mediation and collaboration may offer similar benefits. From working through issues on your own schedule and minimizing legal costs to finding creative ways to compromise and cooperate, these alternatives to divorce litigation may help your family to better navigate a healthier, happier path forward.



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