Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Protecting Your Privacy

One of the biggest advantages of using Collaborative Law to resolve family law issues, such as divorce, is the protection of privacy.

Privacy is very valuable to a number of people.  This includes:
  • Professionals, such as doctors, attorneys, CPAs and others
  • Business people, especially ones involved in owning and running businesses
  • Politicians and office holders
  • Athletes
  • Educators
  • Wealthy people with substantial assets
  • A lot of other people who don't want their personal and financial affairs out in the public's view.
How does Collaborative Law protect privacy?  Here are some ways:
  • The process involves a series of private meetings, rather than court appearances
  • The meetings take place in private, even neutral, locations
  • The meetings and discussions are confidential
  • There is minimal involvement with the Court
  • The terms of the final agreement can be kept private by using an Agreement Incident to Divorce which is not filed with the court papers
  •  Discrete professionals help the parties come to agreements
  • There is no battle of pleadings splashing allegations in the public view
  • There is no testimony in court, other than at the prove-up at the end
If you are facing a divorce or other legal action, you should find a trained Collaborative lawyer and investigate whether your case would be appropriate for Collaborative Law.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Need a Creative Solution?

Some people have very simple divorces which require no imagination.  They are able to utilize the standard guideline child support and visitation.  They split everything 50-50 and everyone is satisfied and ready to move on.

Other people don't fit into standard.  They need something different, up or down, for child support.  They may not like how the standard visitation schedule works in their case.  There may be some special financial concerns that require creativity.

If the "non-standard" people go to court, they will probably get a standard solution imposed on them.  Even if the other side will be a little flexible, that usually does not provide much relief because every court uses the "standard" solutions as the default position.

The "non-standard" people include a variety of parties who need special consideration for various reasons.
  • There may be special circumstances, including financial issues, emotional problems and other things.
  • Children in the case may need special visitation provisions for a variety of reasons, or a parent may need special visitation because of work, travel or other reasons.
  • Extra support may be needed for medical reasons
  • A party may need, but not qualify for, alimony
  • Special schooling may be needed, and paid for.
So, how does Collaborative Law provide a more creative solution?
  • We use neutral Mental Health Professionals and Financial Professionals who can help the parties brainstorm to find new options
  • We sometimes will use a neutral Child Specialist to deal with difficult situations
  • The Financial Professional can help us realistically assess future needs and future financial capabilities
  • We can get neutral business and real estate appraisers
  • We sometimes work with a mortgage specialist who is good at finding ways to reduce payments or get some cash out of a house
  • If needed, we can use personal coaches or counselors for one or both parties
  • The biggest reason is that we are not bound go standard solutions or guidelines.
Do you need more than you could realistically get in court or different solutions? If so, you should talk with a trained Collaborative Lawyer to find out if Collaborative Law would be a good fit for your case.