by Leslee J. Newman, CFL-S, Family Law Attorney
1. Self-Representation (“Pro-Per”)
Both parties may consult with attorneys, but decide to represent themselves in or out of court. Both parties are ultimately responsible for the agreements and paperwork that goes to the court for filing including the final Judgment.
2. One-Party Representation
One party is represented by an attorney and the other is not. Generally, the party who has the attorney is responsible for drafting the paperwork, and the unrepresented spouse would get advice as to what he or she wants included in the final Judgment.
3. Both Spouses Have Representation
Both spouses have their own litigation counsel, and try to settle parts of the case through settlement discussion. If they are unable to settle some or all of the issues, the case goes to court for a judge to make the decisions for the spouses.
Both spouses retain the same mediator who acts as their neutral facilitator and does not represent either party. Depending on the style of the mediator, and whether or not the mediator is an attorney, the spouses may have the benefit of being educated as to the law, available options, recommendations, … Read More “Your Six Different Divorce Alternatives”
by Bart Carey, Family Law Attorney
Law Office of Bart J. Carey, Mediation and Collaborative Family Law
“Divorce is a different experience for children and adults because the children lose something that is fundamental to their development – the family structure. The family comprises the scaffolding upon which children mount successive developmental stages, from infancy into adolescence.” — “Second Chances: Men Women and Children a Decade After Divorce”
How many times have you taken your child through a divorce? Helped your child navigate an emotional and transitory life experience that is difficult and opaque for you? Successfully rebuilt the family structure in ways that support your child? And all at a time when you and your spouse are not on the same page.
When it comes to helping your child through a divorce, consider turning to a child specialist to get the best advice and counsel based on the advantages of their specialized education, training and experience.
Here are nine reasons why you should have a child specialist assist you through your divorce process:
… Read More “Children Must Be Heard and Not Seen During a Divorce: The Advantages of the Child Specialist”
- It’s not therapy. No one is going to mess with your child. The child specialist’s role is to listen to you and
by John R. Denny, Family Law Attorney
Hittelman Strunk Law Group, LLP, Newport Beach, California
- The team approach helps you get through the process without going to war.
You will work with a team of legal, financial, and mental health professionals who are specifically trained in the Collaborative Process. They agree to work with you to reach a settlement outside of court.
- You make the decisions, not the judge.
In the Collaborative Process, the parties do not go to court. They resolve their differences through cooperative negotiation. Thus, all orders are made with both parties’ agreement.
- The process is less expensive than a litigated divorce.
While all cases are different, studies show that a successful Collaborative case is less expensive than a litigated case, even one which settles before trial.
- Coaches help you and your spouse learn to communicate in ways which can reduce the adversarial nature of the divorce.
In a full team Collaborative Divorce, each party will work with an assigned mental health professional acting as a coach. Among other things, the coach will assist the party to avoid the type of communication which will further divide the parties, and make settlement more costly and difficult.
… Read More “10 Best Reasons To Do Your Divorce Collaboratively”
- Your children’s
by Carol R. Hughes, Ph.D., LMFT
Note: To avoid the clumsiness of using “child/children,” “children” is intentionally used throughout this article
It is clear you care about doing the best you can for your children through the separation and divorce process, because you are reading this article. Give yourself permission not to be perfect. No one is. Remember to keep taking slow, deep breaths. You and your children will get through this difficult time.
Consider the following tips to help you prepare to talk with your minor children.
Agree on a time when you and your spouse can talk with your children together. Siblings need the support system they can provide each other. Divorce is a major life crisis for all family members and should be treated as such. Ideally, it is best to share the news with your children when they will have adequate time to absorb what you will be telling them; for instance, when they do not have to go back to school in a day or two after hearing the news.
Plan your presentation to your children in advance. Make some notes about what you plan to say and review them so that you are familiar … Read More “Tips for Talking With Young Children About Your Upcoming Separation or Divorce”