Sunday, November 15, 2015

Need Some Privacy?

In our interconnected world, it gets easier and easier for personal information to be disseminated.  Some people take it in stride, assuming that there's nothing they can do.  For others, the loss of privacy is very distressing.

Divorces are traditionally public events.  The pleadings and court orders are public documents.  Hearings are held in open courtrooms.  Financial and other personal records get spread around and sometimes are publicly available.  Depositions can be occasions for very prying questions.  Very little is considered privileged or confidential.

Collaborative Law offers one way to get divorced in a relatively private manner.  The initial pleadings and final order are filed in the public records, but otherwise, the process allows the parties to keep a low profile.  There are no public meetings or hearings.  Negotiations take place behind closed doors.  Statements made in meetings and communications between the parties and attorneys are confidential.

Who might be interested in the privacy afforded by Collaborative Law?  Here are some people who are motivated to take advantage of the process:
  • Doctors
  • Politicians
  • Judges
  • Lawyers
  • Business owners
  • Professional athletes
  • Actors
  • Investors
  • High wage earners
  • Teachers
  • Financial planners
  • Dentists
  • CPAs
  • Realtors
  • Executives
  • Entertainers 
  • Coaches
  • College Professors
Most people prefer not to have their personal activities out in public. Some people, such as the types listed above, try to maintain a positive public image. They don't want their financial records and information shared with others. They certainly don't want negative comments by their spouse or their spouse's attorney in a public forum.  Just being seen in a divorce court is a problem for some people.

So, what can you do? Consider trying the Collaborative Law process.
  • There is a series of private and confidential meetings.
  • You don't go to court, except to prove up the divorce at the end.
  • Public records are minimized.
  • Fighting is reduced.  You work with specially trained attorneys and, usually, with a neutral therapist to help maintain a good working environment.
  • The timing is determined by the parties.
  • The terms of the final agreement are set by the parties.
If privacy matters to you, talk with a trained and experienced Collaborative attorney about whether Collaborative Law would be the best process for you.

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