Articles Tagged with collaborative law

Divorce and custody disputes are often material for tabloid front pages. Celebrity splits never seem to fall out of favor in the media, even though there are alternative and appropriate dispute resolution methods designed to minimize the hostility. Headlines for years have centered on Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie – the once happy Hollywood couple nicknamed Brangelina by the media. The couple filed for divorce almost two years ago, yet updates on their relationship continue.. Just recently, reports came out about a “bitter” custody battle allegedly being waged by Jolie. When two parties go from a seemingly happy relationship to a contentious court battle, it might seem like the hopes for respectful and productive negotiations are gone. This does not have to be the case in a high conflict situation because the collaborative law process has created an environment where the focus is on the children and the structure encourages dignity and respect rather than inflame underlying hostilities.  Continue Reading

Last week a ‘talking stick’ reportedly broke the stalemate over the government shutdown.  Just what is a talking stick and how can it be used as a means of working through impasse in a negotiation? Continue Reading

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”
― Martin Luther King Jr.  Continue Reading

Entering into a negotiation with uncertainty is not necessarily a bad thing.  Thinking that we know all of the answers before a negotiation starts can lead to less flexible, positional thinking.  A reasonable agreement in divorce is different for each family.  For that reason, we can enter into the negotiation with uncertainty about what is best for one particular family so long as we are flexible in considering available options and work in good faith to find the most reasonable solution.   Some individuals chose to stay in limbo due to uncertainty about outcome.  The uncertainty can lead to fear – that may prohibit productive thinking. Continue Reading

The divorce process involves the uncoupling of many aspects of life. Perhaps the most talked about is the financial aspect.   Creating and understanding your own financial snapshot can be an important step in making the divorce process a productive one.  A fair resolution will address how to divide assets and debts fairly and what the cash flow looks like moving forward. Continue Reading

The divorce process is an emotional time. Tensions surrounding a parenting plan may mount even when both parents prioritize the needs of the children.  Responsiveness, stability, and practicality are significant factors in developing a parenting plan. As parents begin to develop a parenting plan, the need for flexibility is also very important in creating options that consider the child first.  Continue Reading

In 2014, actress Gwyneth Paltrow and musician Chris Martin divorced. Like many celebrity breakups, news of the couple’s separation and divorce made headlines across the country and beyond.  One particular detail elicited a reaction from many people: the phrase “conscious uncoupling.”  People were interested in hearing about this couple’s take on what the family looks like when going through a divorce.  In the years following the couple’s divorce, Paltrow and Martin have still been in the news for how they co-parent and interact with one another and their efforts to contribute positively to the culture of divorce.  Conscious uncoupling and collaborative divorce seek to redefine the construct of the traditional adversarial divorce.  Continue Reading

With so much end of year busyness, it sometimes takes effort to stop for a moment to remember what is important.  I was in the post office last week to send out some holiday presents when one of those moments occurred.[1]  An elderly man slowly walked up to the counter and placed a dime on the counter and stated [to the postal clerk]: “That’s what I owe you.”  The clerk replied: “That wasn’t necessary. You didn’t have to come all the way back.” The man said, “I owed it and I found it in my pocket after I left”.  Continue Reading

I recently posted a blog focusing on the Brad Pitt/Angelina Jolie divorce, specifically that the collaborative law process may be beneficial for the couple. In addition to the general benefits of the collaborative process and how they may be applied to the Pitt/Jolie divorce (the previous blog can be viewed here), the Brangelina case is also an excellent candidate for collaborative law because of the children.  Continue Reading

I recently watched a new television program focused on a couple divorcing and all that goes with such a life changing event.  A particular episode focused on the couple meeting with a mediator in an effort to talk out the issues.  Towards the end of the meeting, in a very judgmental tone and with all of the non-verbal cues that go with judgment, the mediator asked how the children were taking the news. When it became clear that the couple had not yet told the children, the mediator indicated that they needed to tell the children right away.  This took place without any discussion about how and when this would happen. In fact, the mediator followed up by a straightforward command to “just tell them.” This hit me the wrong way and left me thinking about the process of when to speak to the children about the divorce and the best way to do so.  Continue Reading