If You Want A Happier Divorce, Consider This Option

Work together for a swift and less stressful settlement.

Happier divorce fizkes | Shutterstock

Although most divorcing couples assume the only way to come to a settlement is through a messy court divorce, one option can make the process much smoother.

Some couples can't come to a resolution because their strong emotions control their decisions. A judge is necessary in resolving these cases, but many of these couples leave completely unsatisfied and even more depressed after the stressful hearing.


For couples willing to work together for a swift and less stressful settlement, a collaborative divorce is the most sensible option.

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What is a collaborative divorce?

1. You go at your own pace

The divorce process is a difficult and emotionally overwhelming separation from someone you've devoted so much of your life to. With a collaborative divorce, you can work through the process at your own pace.

If you want a speedy divorce, you can meet four or five times to reach a mutual agreement. If you want to assess every aspect of your marriage to be sure you are satisfied with the terms, you can take as much time as you need.


There are no court deadlines to meet, or attorneys pushing you to settle as quickly as possible or dragging out the process to make money off your heartache. This is a divorce on your terms.

Couple back to back wants a happy divorce Di Production via Shutterstock

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2. You can keep your kids in mind

Fostering a collaborative, empathetic, and constructive decision can prevent the difficult impact of the divorce on your kids and easily consider their needs.


Collaborative divorce also eliminates the need to separate the kids from one parent, prevents unfair limits to time spent with the kids, and establishes a fair decision on childcare amounts. There's less pressure and stress on the kids.

3. You save money

Many families — strapped for cash or even doing relatively well — have the opportunity to save tons of money by steering clear of the courtroom.

This lower cost for such a difficult and heartbreaking situation is well worth the time spent working out a quick and fair deal with your soon-to-be ex. With a lower financial incentive, you can be sure your lawyers are solely working in your best interests and genuinely want you to have all the help you need to achieve a fair settlement.


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A collaborative divorce is a voluntary, out-of-court process in which the parties have the support of their attorneys as well as the opportunity to work with mental health professionals and financial professionals so that we can address all the myriad of issues that arise in untangling the marital relationship.

The meeting's goal is to come to a reasonable settlement on each party's terms with their emotions and financial needs in mind. While the emotional aspect is considered, it's used to collaboratively create the terms of the divorce in a more empathetic, caring, and controlled manner that'll benefit everyone involved.

Because of its calmer nature, collaborative divorce has become a more widely accepted and sought-after divorce process in the U.S. and abroad. It has even had a significant impact on the harsh U.S. court divorce systems. According to Elaine McArdle of New York Magazine, "[Collaborative divorce] is gaining powerful supporters: New York's Chief Judge Judith S. Kaye has created a Matrimonial Commission to study ways to improve the state's divorce process, including collaborative law."


Elayne E. Greenberg, a family practice lawyer in Great Neck, NY, explains to New York Magazine why there is an increase in support of this heartfelt process: "The reality is, divorce is a part of life, and people realize how you divorce helps define the next chapter of your life. So, savvy people are more motivated to be sure they don't have an adversarial divorce. They realize divorce doesn't have to be an out-and-out bloodbath."

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Katherine Miller is a matrimonial law attorney who has appeared on the Today Show as well as numerous other television and radio programs and has been quoted in national publications such as the New York Times, Money Magazine and I am a blogger for the Huffington Post