The Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C.

630-409-8184

1444 North Farnsworth Avenue, Suite 307, Aurora, IL 60505

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collaborative law, Kane County divorce attorneyPeople consistently envision the divorce process as an adversarial affair that pits parties against one another, which culminates with the ultimate goal of walking away with more than the other side. Divorces of this type do exist, but every divorce is not destined to be a series of contentious exchanges. Another approach is available that allows couples to maintain civil, working relationships so they have the ability to remain in contact once the divorce is finalized.

Collaborative divorce is an alternative method of navigating the end of a marriage that is conducted in a supportive environment and puts the parties in control of the outcome. Parties wishing to co-parent or retain a family business following divorce could benefit from this resolution process. Understanding that an alternative exists to traditional litigation grants divorcing parties greater freedom in working out conflict, which often leads to more cooperation.

What Is Collaborative Divorce?

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collaborative divorce, illinois divorce, dupage county family law attorneyThe term “collaborative divorce” has been popping up more often in recent years, with many more lawyers claiming collaborative divorce as one of their practice areas. What is collaborative divorce? It can mean several different things, but usually it means the two sides work together to find a settlement instead of having a contested divorce and hurling accusations at each other.

How Does Collaborative Divorce Work?

Most of the time a collaborative divorce starts before any paperwork is ever filed with the court. Instead, the lawyer from one side sends a friendly letter explaining that his or her client has chosen to pursue a collaborative divorce where the sides work together to settle all the issues.

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collaborative law, divorce, Illinois family lawyerNot every divorce is decided in the courtroom. Some couples instead choose to complete their divorces privately, either through mediation or a collaborative law divorce. Each of these options are a type of alternative dispute resolution and each has its own benefits and drawbacks for divorcing couples.

In a collaborative law divorce, a couple maintains the highest amount of control over the proceedings. The couple and their attorneys work together to draft a fair divorce settlement that meets all involved parties' needs. This type of divorce is best suited to couples with amicable relationships who are not divorcing because of adultery, domestic violence, or other volatile grounds.

Talk to your attorney about the possibility of divorcing through collaboration. He or she can give you legal advice tailored to your unique situation to help you decide the best course of action for your divorce. Remember, although collaborative divorce can be a great option, it is not always the best option. Speak to your attorney about reasons why collaborative divorce might or might not be right for you.

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collaborative divorce, mediation, alternative dispute resolution, divorce, Illinois divorce lawyerCan the words “good” and “divorce” inhabit the same sentence? A nasty divorce proceeding can harm children; within that process, they suffer decline in math and social ability, returning to normal skill level only when divorce is final. So, divorce without drama, also known as collaborative divorce, can minimize the negative effect, not to mention the cost savings of avoiding courtroom interaction.

As retired Judge Michele Lowrance presents in her book, “The Good Karma Divorce”, the process is to separate from bargaining from a hard position and to move to interest-based negotiation with a “win-win” outcome. After all, this type of diligence follows logically from the path most take today: 80% of couples now live together before marriage, and 80% have reached the 10-year milestone in wedlock. So, if parting is decided upon, a “conscious uncoupling” using creative problem-solving minimizes confrontation and maximizes a positive feeling for both parents and their children.

Collaboration between spouses avoids the use of children as messengers between parents, and encourages them to love both, regardless of where they may go in life.Per the Collaborative Law Institute, costs average half that of courtroom litigation .The need to work around attorney schedules is totally avoided, and solutions are customized; any strict-guideline judicial decision-making is rendered moot.

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prepaid legal services, Illinois divorce lawyer, alternative dispute resolution, Illinois divorcePrepaid legal services are becoming more popular as benefits offered to employees.  More than 70 million Americans have these prepaid legal services. In these packages, a small amount is paid each month in return for some future assistance on a legal issue. While most of the legal help available is minimal through these programs, some people are still attempting to use them for an uncontested divorce. In these situations, you are likely better off with an attorney.

Many prepaid plans cover basic services and won’t get involved in more complex legal issues, like criminal defense.

If you and your spouse don’t have much to argue over, you might consider using these services for an uncontested divorce. The way the prepaid services work is that as you make payments into the plan, supposedly the amount of “work” you’re eligible to receive from an attorney grows. Once you “max out” these plans, however, you could find that you have to pay for representation anyways.

If your uncontested divorce takes longer than you imagined, or the attorney has to spend a lot of time reviewing facts and materials, you’re going to lose out in the long run by having to hire more of that attorney’s time- at whatever rate he or she wants to charge. You end up trapped if this individual has already completed some work on your case, because you may then feel obligated to pay them to finish it.

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healthy divorce, DuPage County divorce attorney, collaborative law, alternative dispute resolutionNo one thinks on their wedding day that their marriage is going to fail. Unfortunately, many marriages do fail, whether that’s in the first five years or later down the road. The end of a marriage can wreak havoc on the individuals involved, both emotionally and physically.

Even after you have had some time to move on from the divorce, your feelings of sadness, lonliness and anger can creep up and catch you off guard. Recognizing these responses is normal, and it is part of the growth process that allows you to move on.

Even though there are emotional challenges with the end of any marriage, it is possible to have a healthy divorce.

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The Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C.

630-409-8184

1444 North Farnsworth Avenue, Suite 307, Aurora, IL 60505

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