If both you and your spouse have experienced collaborative attorneys, are committed to staying out of court, and take advantage of the other types of professionals which make sense for your situation, it is very likely you can reach a settlement which works for you. In studies done around the country, 85-90% of collaborative divorces [...]
In the collaborative divorce process you will have an attorney working with you every step of the way to make sure that your interests are addressed. You will also have a child specialist to help protect your children by uncovering your children’s needs and help formulate a parenting plan that works for your family. There [...]
No. Under lawyers' rules of ethics, lawyers in the same firm are like a single lawyer. The firm cannot represent parties who may have "conflicting interests." We can provide a list of highly competent collaborative attorneys in the area for you or your spouse to consider.
Yes—in a collaborative divorce process, the attorneys, child specialist help parents figure out a parenting plan that works for their children and family situation. They also help parents figure out how they will financially support their children in a way that makes sense for their unique circumstances.
When you begin to think that there’s at least a 50% chance that your marriage may end in divorce, and if you're not in marriage counseling, it's probably time to commit to some very hard work with a marriage counselor. If you begin to think there's a 70-80% chance that your marriage may end in [...]
Several things about the collaborative divorce proceedings can make them more efficient than traditional divorce. They are less formal. Communication lines are more open. Neutral consultants are used in instead competing expert witnesses. The attorneys use a client-centered, interest-based approach to negotiating disagreements, rather than an attorney-centered, positional-based approach to negotiating. For these reasons and [...]
There are many differences, but the most noticeable ones are: There is no formal discovery, i.e. no depositions, "interrogatories" or "document requests." The spouses agree to full and complete voluntary disclosure of all relevant information. The negotiation model used is the "interest-based" model instead of a "position-based" model. The attorneys in a collaborative divorce agree [...]
No. Lawyers' rules of ethics prohibit one lawyer from representing "opposing" parties. Even if you and your spouse are getting along, in the eyes of the law, you still have "potentially conflicting interests" and cannot be represented by the same attorney.
Yes. Lawyers help you understand the legal consequences of your agreements and point out where pitfalls might lie, such as unforeseen tax consequences or legal ramifications, so you can take steps to mitigate risks now instead of later. We have seen many problems arise from agreements that were reached in good faith but not drafted [...]
There are many divorce-lawyer websites in North Carolina that provide information about the matrimonial statutes and the rights and obligations of spouses going through divorce. It's hard to get a lot from these websites, because specific answers about your rights require specific and detailed information about your particular circumstances. As part of the collaborative process [...]
There are basic "entitlements" described in the divorce laws of North Carolina. If you are a parent, you are entitled to continue to parent your child in some form or fashion. If you have marital property, you are entitled to have an "equitable" portion of the marital estate. If you earn little or no money [...]
No one can say until you reach an agreement or have a court hearing how much alimony you will have to pay. There is no formula for alimony in North Carolina, and, under the matrimonial statutes, alimony is left to the sole discretion of the trial judge. If an attorney tells you what you will [...]
The marital residence will often have special significance, possibly because it and the neighborhood are familiar to the children, or because it is a major asset in the marital estate, or because it represents stability in a stormy time of life. When the house is of special significance, the attorneys in the collaborative process will [...]
Only a judge has the authority to grant a divorce. However, it is not necessary to have a judge determine child custody, child support, alimony, and the equitable distribution of property. All of these things can be decided by private agreement in non-court, collaborative proceedings.
We bill hourly. So the cost of a collaborative divorce can vary widely. We have an online evaluation survey called the MCSI Part A that helps us assess whether the collaborative process is suitable for a couple, and, if so, the range of services likely to be required. Please contact us if you'd like to [...]