7 Reasons To Choose Collaborative Divorce

Collaborative divorce is a cost-effective, problem-solving approach that can minimize the impact of conflict on you and your children. There are many advantages to the collaborative process.  This article focuses on 7 of the major advantages to utilizing collaborative.

*Artwork was provided by a child of parents going through divorce.

Divorce rates are tricky to decipher.  However, most studies on the topic seem to relate that about 1 in 2 marriages end in divorce.  The incidence of divorce can go up depending on where you live, age at the time of marriage and factors like whether or not you cohabited prior to the marriage.    The incident of divorce also increases with subsequent marriages. 

I read somewhere that there is a divorce in the United States every 13 seconds.  That’s a whole lot of divorces happening every day.  People who have gone through a divorce know that it can be the worst.  The process is often related as the most stressful and unpredictable event in someone’s life.  Divorce often leaves both parties feeling like they’ve lost.

Fortunately, a more harmonious option has become increasingly popular around the country.  Collaborative practice was started in Minnesota in the mid-90’s.  The Nebraska Collaborative Practice Group started nearly 10 years ago.  The collaborative process has been applied to settle grudges between street gangs, wrangling between businesses and even disputes between nations.   The process is actually productive rather than destructive.

As a means of reaching an agreement between a divorcing couple, collaborative practice “provides you and your spouse or partner with the support and guidance of your own lawyers without going to court,” according to the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals (IACP). By allowing both spouses to draw on the expertise of financial, mental health and child specialists who work with them and their attorneys as a team, it serves as a non-adversarial mechanism for dealing with differences and disputes.

Nebraska is ahead of most other states in having fostered collaborative practice for nearly 10 years.  There are many advantages to utilizing the collaborative process for a divorce over a regular litigated divorce.  The paramount advantage is reducing the hostilities between the parties.  Parties are able to keep their children’s future at the forefront of the negotiations and utilize professionals to assist with their decisions.


If you and your spouse are considering divorce, a new alternative to the usual adversarial approach is collaborative divorce . This is an area of family law that trains attorneys to negotiate, compromise and create a friendlier environment. It is an effective way to end a marriage without the acrimony, anger and resentment of many divorces.  There are seven main benefits to collaborative divorce law, but for it to work both spouses must be committed to working together to have an amicable divorce.


1. Input. Your input matters. You and your spouse determine what issues are important to you and you work with specialists to address them.

2. Control. You make the final decision. If your case were to go through the litigation route, you leave the final decisions up to a judge who doesn’t know you and what is important to you.

3. Timeliness. The pace of the collaborative case is up to you and your spouse. You don’t have to wait on the courts.

4. Predictability. There is less uncertainty about what is going to happen during the process as the attorneys are working together to reach an outcome not playing games to get the upper hand.

5. Future relationship. If you have children, you know that you will have to have a relationship with each other for years to come. Finding a compromise that is best for everyone is the end goal, not making your spouse look bad.

6. Cost. A collaborative divorce is typically less expensive than a litigated divorce. Attorney fees and court costs add up quickly during litigation.

7. Professional involvement. You have two trained attorneys, an independent financial adviser, a child specialist, and life coaches working with you and your spouse throughout the process to ensure that everyone is making educated decisions.

More and more attorneys are involved in collaborative divorce law. If a marriage has come to an end, this is a far better solution for all involved.

Article by:

Jodie Haferbier McGill

Jodie McGill is a trained collaborative attorney.