The Collaborative Dispute Resolution Method

The outcome of a divorce or legal battle can affect the most important parts of your life — for the rest of your life. Many people would prefer to try to negotiate with the other party rather than leave the final decision up to a judge. The collaborative dispute resolution method offers a holistic approach to divorce and other contentious issues.

At Peacemakers Collaborative Law Center, we use collaborative law to help our clients find amicable resolutions to divorce and other family law issues. Drawing on more than 30 years of collective experience, our lawyers are skilled at working with clients to negotiate amicable, favorable outcomes in situations involving child custody, child support, property division, business disputes and dissolution, and other similar legal issues where the two parties find there is value in preserving their relationships.

What Is Collaborative Divorce?

In collaborative divorce, you use negotiation to end a marriage without litigation. Both parties work with attorneys as well as other professionals such as mental health counselors and financial professionals. These professionals, typically selected by the attorneys to be part of a "professional team", are neutrals who work with both parties.

The process takes place in an informal setting, and it can be far more cost-effective and efficient than a divorce in family court in front of a judge. Since the information at stake is discussed within a collaborative team setting, none of your private matters will need to be presented in court. This can be particularly comforting in situations involving children.

How The Collaborative Method Differs From Mediation

While collaborative law and mediation both seek to resolve disputes without litigation, these are two different processes and approaches to the law. In Florida, mediation is a required part of the traditional divorce process and is typically aimed at reaching a compromise. If the two parties are unable to reach a compromise, then the case would proceed to family court. Collaborative law takes a more holistic approach from the beginning, working at building options and consensus.

Is Collaborative Divorce Right For You?

Collaborative divorce may not work in every situation. For example, if one party has been a victim of domestic violence, collaborative divorce would not be a good idea. It also may not be the best option when there is a significant power imbalance between the two parties.

To talk to an attorney about whether a collaborative approach could work in your situation, call the Peacemakers Collaborative Law Center at 888-515-4347 or contact us online. Our office is located in Brandon, near I-75, and we work with clients in Hillsborough, Manatee, Pasco, Polk and Pinellas counties.