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Collaborative divorce worth considering for some Arizona families

From time to time, we have mentioned collaborative divorce in our posts on this blog. This type of proceeding offers a different approach to the typical approach to obtaining a divorce in Arizona. Instead of litigating every step of the way, a collaborative divorce is a multidisciplinary approach where the goal is to work together to achieve fair agreement on all outstanding issues.

While each party has an attorney, they agree to avoid court intervention. Instead, a team of professionals is arranged, depending on the particular facts and circumstances presented. That team could include financial advisors and mental health professionals. The concept of a divorce coach is utilized, both for the parties to the divorce as well as for any minor children.

The parties reserve the option to go to court if they are not able to solve their differences through collaboration. However, the attorneys typically agree at the outset of a collaborative divorce to withdraw from the case if the parties cannot reach an agreement. Fortunately, in many instances, a full and comprehensive agreement is achievable with a minimum of the rancor that is sometimes associated with litigated proceedings.

Options for alternative dispute resolution in Arizona such as divorce mediation or a collaborative approach will not work in every instance. If parties are able to keep positive lines of communication open, however, these alternatives may be feasible and result in less stress on the entire family. In the end, the goal is to work together to achieve a full and fair agreement that meets the needs of each party while achieving a settlement that is fair and considers the short and long-term needs of those involved.

Source:, "A civil separation: Collaborative divorce aims for balanced approach," Tracy Frank, Nov. 27, 2012

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