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Collaborative Practice - A Less Painful Divorce

Updated: Jul 31, 2018

A holistic approach to divorce can be emotionally and financially better for you, your former partner/co-parent, your children – in fact, your extended family members and friends may even benefit from your “conscious uncoupling.”


“I know it’s a dorky term, but it’s very worthwhile. I wanted to turn my divorce into a positive,” said Gwyneth Paltrow. “What if I didn’t blame the other person for anything, and held myself 100% accountable? What if I put my children first? And reminded myself about the things about my ex-husband that I love, and fostered the friendship?”


What if, indeed.


Four Ways to Divorce


Technically, there are 4 types of divorces in Arizona:

  1. Collaborative – This takes the drama out of the divorce procedure, which is what most couples want and most children need. You create a divorce settlement without going to court; one that considers everyone and everything. Your collaborative divorce attorney may engage other professionals and offer 3 services in one: legal, communication, and financial.

  2. DIY (do-it-yourself) – “Don’t do-it-yourself!” says financial reference source, Forbes magazine. Even the easiest divorce can have legal complications and the mistakes made with a DIY divorce often return to haunt you later. It’s simply a very bad idea.

  3. Mediation – A divorce/family law professional remains neutral to both parties and strives to help you work toward a suitable divorce process. With divorce mediation, it’s still important to retain your own legal counsel to review your agreements.

  4. Litigation – The traditional divorce option can still keep a couple out of court, even though “litigation” means “lawsuit.” Litigation in court may be the only option when one partner wants to hide assets, conceal cash or acts in bad faith. A good attorney will seek a collaborative divorce process with the couple before moving on to litigation. For most couples, divorce litigation in court should be a “Plan B.”


Divorce Wellness


Conscious uncoupling isn’t a new idea, but it’s gaining in popularity in Arizona and throughout the U.S. under a new name: Collaborative Divorce. This is a holistic, positive way to end a marriage and begin the transition toward a new, healthy family dynamic. Forbes’ writer Jeff Landers says because no two marriages are alike, divorces should be customized to fit the personalities of both partners. That customization simply is not available in a litigated divorce.



What You Need for a Less Painful Divorce


Divorces are simply changes in a partnership. A future-oriented, holistic approach to divorce can help you make the transition smoother for everyone. For a less painful divorce experience, you need:

  • Communication – Especially when children are involved, effective communication between partners is important during the transition to a new family dynamic.

  • Community support – Friendships and personal networks can help the healing process by providing emotional support.

  • Financial fairness – Full transparency is achieved and both of you are satisfied with the legal financial arrangements and conditions of your divorce negotiated in good faith with the guidance of your collaborative team.

  • Goodwill – You want what’s best for your family and your shared interests, like children, and your spouse feels the same way. Mutual goodwill can be the most important element of a collaborative divorce. Peace has VALUE!


How to Begin the Process of ‘Conscious Uncoupling’ with Collaborative Divorce


Before you begin the divorce process, it’s important to learn more about what kind of divorce you need for your specific situation. If you want what’s best for you, your partner, and your children, collaborative divorce in Arizona can help you begin the transition from your marriage as well as work towards the beginning of a positive future. Best Legal Choices is Arizona’s collaborative effort to provide legal, financial, and communication professionals for conscious uncoupling. We believe your emotional health and wellness can begin – not end – with your divorce.

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